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Julian Gibbs

Cofunds and Fidelity will be introducing services which will enable IFAs to become much more efficient and save a huge amount of money through streamlined administration.

On balance, I prefer Cofunds because it will be totally independent and will be designed specifically for the UK market. It is backed by Threadneedle, M&G, Jupiter and Gartmore but none of these fund companies will be able to access IFA clients&#39 business.

I believe that Cofunds, which is currently awaiting clearance from Brussels, will attract more fund managers than Fidelity and, therefore, more IFAs although I think that some IFAs will choose to go along with both organisations.

At the core of Cofunds will be a nominee company holding all the client and IFA business records. Consolidated information and administration will allow IFAs to deliver an enhanced service to their clients.

With a comprehensive range of fund managers and funds all in one place, Cofunds will enhance portfolio planning, management and administration processes and offer real choice for advisers and their clients.

Over three quarters of all fund business is now transacted through intermediaries and this trend towards taking advice looks to be continuing.

I believe that Cofunds will be a great step forward and will help IFAs to become much more efficient and cost-effective.

Every IFA dealing in unit trusts should talk to both Cofunds and Fidelity and then decide whether to use one or both. Even over the short-term, joining should increase an IFA&#39s profits.

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