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Misys plans preferred panel

Misys is in talks with product providers about a preferred panel for a multi-tie operation to sit alongside an IFA and authorised offering to brokers.

In a statement to the Stock Exchange, Misys chairman Kevin Lomax said it now supports CP121 and the Sandler review for the industry because they are positive for its member IFA firms.

The company has appointed Lexicon Partners alongside Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein to advise it on its options. Misys claims this is to expand its business but rivals have speculated it may want to offload Misys IFA Services because it does not fit in with the rest of the group.

Other City investment banks are known to have told providers that Misys would hope to raise £1bn if it sold the financial services arm.

Lomax admitted that the software and financial services group, which has 7,500 registered individuals, is in negotiations with a number of key life and pension providers.

Preferred provider status is thought to have been offered to the three shareholders – Norwich Union, Scottish Widows and Friends Provident – in the Misys-owned portal Assuresoft. Another five preferred providers are being sought.

Membership would give the providers access to the Misys database, product design and any special offers but is understood to come with a huge entry fee which is calculated on market share.

Misys IFA Services director of marketing Andy Bedford says: “We are big enough to be all things to all people. We will supply services to IFAs, distributor firms and some limited market multi-tie set-up.”

Misys chairman Kevin Lomax says: “We believe that the recent announcement by the FSA and the ongoing Sandler review are positive for the industry as a whole and Misys and its member firms in partic-ular. Misys is committed to the ongoing growth and development of its IFA businesses, supported by the benefits of scale, financial strength and strong provider relations.”

NU spokesman James Evans says: “We are continually talking to distributors about sales and marketing opportunities and the impact of CP121 but we have not gone into specifics.”

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