Infocus seals deal with SMA platform provider


By Julie May

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A white label version of Praemium’s separately managed account (SMA) platform has been made available this week to advisers across merged licensees Infocus Wealth Management and Patron Financial Services, the Infocus group announced yesterday.

Infocus managing director Rod Bristow said the offering would add to the group’s existing managed funds model portfolio solution and provide an SMA platform with integrated reporting and tax optimisation functionality.

“[The Infocus Managed Accounts solution] offers a completely automated SMA investment option for advisers and their clients,” Bristow said, adding it was ideal for self-managed superannuation fund and high net worth clients seeking transparency, cost effectiveness and flexibility in investment management and reporting.

The offering would give clients access to complete multi-asset class portfolios appropriate to their risk profile as well as a range of single asset class portfolios, while providing advisers with efficient investment management and automated reports for any range of dates.

These reports included portfolio valuation, performance, transaction history, income, tax and more, Bristow said.

“For advisers in the Infocus group we continue to deliver efficiency in investment management and reporting, whether clients are invested in managed funds or managed accounts,” he said.

“The Infocus Managed Accounts solution is consistent with our mission of helping advisers grow revenue, enhance efficiency and effectively manage risk in their business.”

Praemium commercial director Andrew Varlamos said the firm was excited to be working with Infocus, a large, independent and progressive dealer group, and that the Infocus Managed Accounts solution was further validation that managed accounts were becoming a mainstream solution.

Following reports earlier this year that the availability of separately managed accounts (SMAs) via platforms had increased dramatically in 2014, research released at the end of last month showed the number of financial advisers in Australia using SMAs was also at an all-time high.

The “February 2015 JBWere/Investment Trends SMA Report”, which surveyed over 650 advisers, revealed 20 per cent were using SMAs, while a further 23 per cent planned to use them.

When asked why they recommended SMAs to clients, 46 per cent of advisers nominated the fact they allowed clients to see the underlying shares in their portfolios, while 45 per cent said they were less of an administrative burden than direct shares, with 42 per cent indicating SMAs were an efficient way to access professional funds management.

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