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Now Webline enters portal row

Webline is the latest portal to join the row between its rivals

AssureWeb and The Exchange about which is gaining most ground in the

IFA marketplace.

Webline was set up in 1995, and says it processes around one million

quotes a month, which it estimates is 400 per cent more than

Bankhall&#39s IFA Engine and Misys&#39 Assure-Web combined.

AssureWeb refuses to disclose its level of quotations, saying it

prefers to focus on delivering end-to-end processing.

But Webline says Assure-web&#39s stance is “a little odd”, as providers

on the portals would be aware of the number of quotes dealt with as

part of their contractual agreements.

Webline admits that The Exchange remains the dominant portal for IFAs

but it estimates that it should be processing 20 per cent of the

volume of quotes handled by The Exchange by the end of the year, up

from its current level of 13.5 per cent.

Managing director Paul Holland says: “Above all, we welcome more

competition in the portal arena. It is a shame that the two best

known companies in the area have chosen to argue publicly and this

does little to help the image of the portal in the minds of advisers

and the industry.”

AssureWeb chief operating officer Doug Morris says: “Merely competing

over quotations is to my mind a risky strategy and for the market is

arguably yesterday&#39s news.”

•Portals, p8-9;Letters, p32

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