Shifting trends in the platform market mean life company-owned platforms are turning around perception among advisers, according to research by The Platforum.
Figures from its adviser guide show that the Aviva and Axa platforms have both seen a shift in adviser perception over the last year.
Asked if there were platforms that had been ignored in the past but which were now becoming more prominent, 12 per cent highlighted Aviva and 9 per cent pointed to Axa.
The Platforum notes Aviva saw 13 per cent growth in assets in Q1.
It adds in its report that platforms backed by traditional life offices may have suffered from trust issues in the past.
The Platforum says: “Previously many advisers would shun life company-owned platforms, citing bad experiences with the parent brands in the past and a lack of trust as the reason behind this. The research findings suggest that perceived benefits of engaging with larger, more established brands are gaining ground.”
In Q1 2014 Cofunds net sales were 28 per cent of gross sales. Skandia’s net sales were 34 per cent of their gross figure, and FundsNetwork’s 35 per cent.
The consultancy says Standard Life is bucking the trend with a 78 per cent net sales to gross ratio.
The survey also found 40 per cent of those interviewed deal with Cofunds as a “legacy” and are placing “minimal or zero” new clients onto the platform. Over a quarter of advisers mention Skandia as a legacy platform and 26 per cent name Fidelity FundsNetwork.
The Platforum head of data Richard Bradley says: “Whilst it would be expected that newer platforms Aviva and Aegon would have higher net:gross sales ratios, Standard Life’s results are very solid, given the size of the platform.
“It’s interesting to note that the life companies and former life companies – Aegon, Aviva, AXA and Standard Life – are those reporting some of the strongest results. In general, the life companies appear to be performing well at the moment.”