IFA Promotion will no longer get referrals from Mail newspapers' website www.this ismoney.co.uk because owner Associated News and Media wants to make referrals to advisers with a minimum AFPC qualification.
Sofa has taken the contract from IFAP and is offering members access to referrals for a fee.
In a letter to Sofa members seen by Money Marketing, Sofa says: “Following ANM's decision to develop a financial health-check on the site, it was persuaded that it would be more appropriate for those individuals to be referred to a professionally qualified adviser.”
IFAP chief executive David Elms declines to comment on whether Sofa's statement suggests that IFAP members are not of a sufficiently high calibre.
ANM initially charges IFA firms £100 per office location with a further £75 for each registered individual within the firm and a share of revenue set at 15 per cent for the first 12 months.
Elms is concerned that the new service is not confidential for users as an identity must be input for access. He says IFAP members hold a wide range of qualifications.
Elms says: “The referral service is now offering a service substantially below the one offered historically because of the number and range of advisers.”
ANM editor Guy Dres-ser says: “IFA Promotion is highly respectable but we are just replacing one service with another. We had a tool and knew it could be improved on.”
Clarity begins at home for Aegon UK chief executive in waiting Otto Thoresen who is detemined to bring a clear business focus and market definition to the company