Speaking following the Skandia rebrand, Old Mutual Wealth global head of distribution Steven Levin says he expects the firm to pursue a direct offering in the future.
He says: “Historically, we’ve been focused on advisers. I think, in time, we will look at going direct-to-consumer. I think it’s a while away but we’re looking at building a multi-channel business and D2C is a key channel.”
In the short-term, however, Levin says the company is developing ways to save advisers time and make their job easier. He cites Old Mutual’s decision to launch a discretionary portfolio management service for advisers as an example.
The service has had £350m of inflows since it launched in February.
“We have always been open architecture and that will continue to be the case,” Levin says. “But actually what advisers are increasingly looking for is a portfolio service that’s tailored to them.”
The Old Mutual Foundation multi-asset range, run by multi-manager head John Ventre and UK equities head Richard Buxton, among others, is a risk-profiled range that uses only in-house branded funds.
Levin says the company’s multi-asset funds are seeing increasing demand from advisers outsourcing their investment management.
“The days of old where you had IFAs going down the fund tables and picking a little of this and a little of that, trying to keep portfolios within the risk profile, they are gone,” he says.
Levin also suggests the level of competition in the platform market means firms must diversify their proposition or risk extinction.
“We’re more than just a platform now, which is good because I think you have to be more than a platform to survive. The margins are too low and there are too many in the market.”