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Ocean Finance makes waves with IRS equity-release deal

Ocean Finance has entered the equity-release market in a deal with product provider In Retirement Services.

Ocean, which is best known for its daytime television advertisements for debt consolid- ation, will introduce business to IRS rather than advising clients itself.

IRS, which is considering plans to launch its own series of TV ads next year, insists it has no qualms about linking up with a firm that many see as one of the leading intermediaries in the controversial secured loan market.

Ocean previously outsourced equity-release leads to a third party but did not seek out business although it will now actively market itself to reti- red people.

The deal marks IRS’s lat- est affinity partnership as it continues to exert its influence in the equity-release market. It has other major deals with IFA network Tenet and high street banking giant HSBC.

IRS head of business development Frank McCann says: “Ocean Finance is a quality, recognised direct-to-consumer brand. The recently published comments from the FSA on equity-release advice highlighted the requirement for the specialist skills required and supports our decision to offer this service to IFAs and advisers.

“IRS will not allow anyone to purchase an equity-release plan without the benefit of face to face advice and Ocean Finance were influenced by this stance.”

Ocean marketing director Stuart Johnson says: “Feed- back from our customers suggests that face-to-face advice in the equity-release market is essential.”

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