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IFA in plans for new network

Protection specialist Personal Touch Insurance is set to establish a new

IFA network within six months.

The financial services company, which last week announced the sale of a

9.99 per cent stake to Aegon for around £2m, aims to have an

operational low-cost network before the end of the second quarter of the

year.

Proceeds from the recent deal with Aegon have been earmarked to give

sufficient capital adequacy to set up the business.

Personal Touch already has 24 RIs in its existing IFA arm and claims it is

in talks with 150 advisers to join the new network. The group aims to

recruit 100 IFAs by the middle of 2003.

The Solihull-based firm specialises in protection but distributes a full

range of financial services products through its companies, The Insurance

Supermarket, The Loan Supermarket, The Life Insurance Supermarket and

Personal Touch Medical.

Personal Touch chief executive Martin Wilson says: “We see ourselves as one

of the new networks. We aim to have a financial services business in every

aspect of the market including IFAs, mortgages, insurance and unregulated

business. A lot of networks are not brilliant models and many IFAs are just

waiting to move.”

Berkeley Berry Birch deputy group chief executive Stephen Ingledew says:

“We always welcome more competition. There seem to be a lot of launches and

competition based on costs. We are in a different market because we do not

compete on price.”

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