Brett Williams, founder of Selestia and currently head of Skandia's wealth management unit, will become the new CEO of Cofunds, the firm has announced.
The move follows the news yesterday that Skandia's new wealth management platform would be an extension of the Skandia Investment Solutions platform, under the leadership of Skandia UK CEO Nick Poyntz-Wright, rather than a separate unit.
Williams will join Cofunds before the end of the year.
Charlie Eppinger, who currently holds the positions of both CEO and chairman at Cofunds, had been overseeing the firm's search for a new chief executive.
Eppinger says: "I am delighted Brett has accepted our offer. He has an impressive record of success in building new businesses.
"Cofunds is looking to develop its proposition to meet the needs of all types of advisory firm, including advisors looking to offer a range of commission and fee structures to their clients, So Brett’s understanding of the needs of adviser firms will be invaluable."
“Cofunds is already the largest platform in the UK which is not owned by a product provider but it has the financial backing of a powerful set of shareholders," Williams says.
"They have convinced me that they are very ambitious for Cofunds future and intend to go on backing its growth as an independent company.
"When we look at other countries, there are generally only a handful of competitors who dominate the platform arena.
"In the UK Cofunds is clearly already among the leaders and I relish the challenge of keeping it moving forward as the market continues to develop.”
Williams' departure comes hot on the heels of Skandia marketing head Billy Mackay's move this summer to A J Bell while Selestia co-founder Bill Vasilieff left Skandia last summer and is in the process of launching his own platform, Novia.
Skandia's new wealth unit has been designed to research and develop a strategy to bring wealth management solutions to UK customers through the evolving adviser market.
It was initially aimed at advisers looking to service and take on more clients with around £1-10m in assets.
In order to concentrate on the new unit, Williams left his role as CEO of the UK Business Unit to be replaced by Poyntz-Wright. He also stepped down from direct supervision of the former Selestia platform, which he launched ten years ago.
Poyntz-Wright, chief executive of Skandia UK, says: "I'd like to thank Brett for his great achievement in building Selestia and then helping to successfully integrate it into Skandia.
"He leaves us in a great position to continue leading the way in the platform market [and] we wish Brett well in his new role.”
Following the acquisition of Skandia by Selestia’s parent Old Mutual in January 2006, Williams moved to become CEO of Skandia UK and oversee the joint Selestia/Skandia platform, Selestia Investment Solutions.IFAonline
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