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Moneyextra is sold in switch back to B2B

Moneyextra is ditching its consumer portal and going back to concentrate on the intermediary sector with a complete e-commerce service geared up for multi-ties.

The Moneyextra consumer site, which has been a source of financial strain on the company, has been sold to Bristol & West for £26m.

Many users had accused Money extra of neglecting its IFA support base by turning to the consumer market.

It will be concentrating on the business-to-business arena through The Exchange. It has bought financial services software company Crisp Computing for £29.4m. The new company will be called Exchange FS.

The new group also says it can cope with a multi-tied environment as Crisp already has the technology to sell through tied agents.

Exchange FS will offer sales, transaction and administration services to providers and intermediaries, providing a completely automated pro cess to reach consumers.

It claims its technology will enable other firms to distribute and sell products electronically. It has ruled out the possibility of operating as a second-generation network, saying networks are poten-tial customers rather than competition.

Moneyextra&#39s share price closed at 30p on Friday when the news of the deals were announced, down by 1p from Thursday and still down massively from its high of 385p in December 1999.

The Exchange managing director David Dalton-Brown says: “A dual environment presents a big opportunity for us. We can help providers in a multi-tied environment but we are sure the IFA sector will continue to grow. We are in a strong position to partner IFAs and providers to help them exploit this change.”

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