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Aviva launches face-to-face advice arm

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Aviva is to re-enter the face-to-face advice market by the end of the year.

The inhouse team will have a “particular focus” on customers seeking advice at the point of retirement.

The team will be restricted to selling Aviva products, including flexi-access drawdown and annuities.

Aviva is the largest pension provider in the UK, following its takeover of Friends Life.

Client advice director Andy Barton says: “The introduction of the pension freedoms means that thousands of people are facing important decisions about their financial futures.

“With this in mind, we are developing an in-house advice team to complement our existing channels and provide our customers with the support they need.

“Customers can already buy our products through independent financial advisers, high street banks, and direct via the internet or over the phone, so this latest initiative will give them even greater freedom and choice.”

He adds: “We take great care to ask customers if they already have a financial adviser, and if so we recommend that they speak to them in the first instance.”

In 2014 Money Marketing revealed the insurer’s plans to restart its own advice services focused on protection.

And in 2013 Money Marketing revealed that Aviva was scrapping its direct advice arm. Amid a round of cost-cutting, the firm cut the majority of its 120 field-based advisers and ended its bancassurance relationship with Coventry Building Society.

At the time it retained around 10 advisers to continue servicing existing clients but discontinued advice for new clients.

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Comments

There are 5 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. “The team will be restricted to selling AVIVA products” So not real advice then?

  2. Don’t forget to signpost the customer to Pension Wise before highlighting your in-house service! … It’s all getting a tad mickey mouse now isn’t it?!!

  3. If the service and proposition is anything like that offered to intermediaries, then heaven help the public. I’ll never forget Jeremy Clarkson trying to get a motor quote from Aviva!

    This is so like past experience. This is definitely a ‘Hokey Kokey’ firm. The number of flips of policy over the past 25 years is amazing. Support intermediaries, go direct, form a platform, dismantle a platform and then start over again. Then support intermediaries again, then go direct sales. All I can think is that the firm is run by Humpty Dumpty.

  4. Harry, when I worked at a large life office we used to joke about the fact that the focus of the business changed every 5-10 years to justify employing the people at the top.

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