November 10, 2012

UK's first digital IFA launches today

We are the UK's first fully-regulated online adviser scaling up automated financial advice across the industry.

After three weeks of trials with friends and family we are excited to launch Pension Wizard properly today with the following press release:

Low cost expert advice for all

‘Pension Wizard’ delivers expert, commission-free independent financial advice on your pensions affairs at very low cost – and all online Wake up your Wealth, the UK’s first financial advice business designed for the digital age, today announces the launch of its ground-breaking ‘Pension Wizard’ - the first fully online independent financial advice service in the UK, making quality independent advice accessible to all, not just the wealthy. The new service is built on the ‘Algorithm Based Advice’ concept which is already established in the USA, delivering low cost automated online financial planning services. The FSA’s Retail Distribution Review of the UK’s existing advice industry is widely expected to reduce the availability of advice for the mass market, as advisers withdraw from the market or focus on wealthier clients. Wake up your Wealth’s Pension Wizard will be an important step in providing the wider public with easy access to high quality independent financial advice that is affordable. The Pension Wizard is the first online independent advice service on offer from Wake up your Wealth and will be added to in the future with other Wizards to cover the other key independent financial advice need areas. In summary, the Pension Wizard works by gaining a thorough understanding of the client’s personal profile, employing tools built using Wake up your Wealth’s Chartered Financial Planning expertise and the best psychometric principles. The Wizard then provides advice on investment strategy now and going forward to retirement, developed with independent experts and using low cost passively managed investment funds. Andrew Firth, founder and executive director of Wake up your Wealth said:“We are bringing together the very best principles and practices of high quality independent financial advice, with the very latest in online technology, to deliver a revolutionary service fit for today’s world and how people prefer to get things done – via the convenience and control of engaging online.”

“The timing is also ideal, as the FSA’s ban on commission will soon take effect and will cut the numbers of advisers serving the wider population of less wealthy people. Wake up your Wealth is very much designed as the perfect solution for this large audience that still needs and wants expert independent advice but would otherwise find it prohibitively expensive. “Our service is radically cheaper than conventional face to face IFA services but with absolutely no sacrifice in the quality of advice delivered – both initially and then year after year at each annual review.”

As a special launch offer, the cost of the initial advice report using the Pension Wizard is just £24. If the customer is happy with the advice and wants Wake up your Wealth to proceed with implementation, then there is a further charge of £49. At launch of the Pension Wizard, the products of 12 of the leading pension providers in the UK are included in this advice service, as each offers the low cost, passively managed funds that Wake up your Wealth advises all of its customer to use. Should a customer have one or more pensions with providers outside of this range, then they can use Wake up your Wealth’s ‘Pension Tidy-Up’ service. This service provides advice on whether it is worthwhile to move these existing holdings to a lower cost pension solution and gives customers the same advice provided by the Pension Wizard in terms of the optimum investment strategy for their personal profile. Given the additional complexity involved, this advice service costs between £99 and £499, depending on the number and complexity of the customer’s existing pensions. Whether the customer comes through the Pension Wizard or the Pension Tidy-Up advice services, ongoing monitoring and advice at annual reviews is delivered by Wake up your Wealth’s ‘Pensions Manager Service’ for an annual fee of between £100 and £300 p.a. dependent on the size of the customer’s pensions savings. Wake up your Wealth and the Pension Wizard advice service have been built by a team of senior industry practitioners with extensive past experience working with businesses including Egg Investments, Zopa, Opal Benefits and Willis Owen. Significant additional independent expertise has and continues to be provided by specialist firms including Byrne and Blake, Raynor Spencer Mills and AKG

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