Skandia MultiFunds' legacy business - billions of pounds accumulated over 20 years - is still not migrated onto the new Skandia Investment Solutions platform nearly a year after launch.
This is despite Skandia assuring advisers in September 2006 that "any existing plans held on the two platforms (Skandia MultiFunds and Selestia) will be seamlessly migrated onto the new platform when it launches".
Statements on the group’s website now read: “Clients will be transferred over to the Selestia Investment Solutions investment platform on a date to be confirmed.”
“The scale and complexity of moving the accounts onto the new investment platform is unprecedented in the UK," it continues.
"We originally intended to move the accounts across on 25 February 2008, but we did not carry out this move on that date. It is essential we fulfil this transition smoothly and reliably, and we believed this required more time.”
The delay will be concerning for advisers in the light of this week’s announcement that the Skandia Investment Solutions platform will form the foundation for Skandia’s development plans for wrap, particularly into the wealth management space.
The intention is for advisers to get used to using this platform and then progress to other available services as their businesses evolve.
The new platform was designed as a step up from the existing Selestia and Skandia platforms, combining the best elements of both platforms.
Commenting on the delay, Skandia UK CEO Nick Poyntz-Wright says that, until now, the provider was not getting feedback from IFAs that MultiFunds migration was a top priority for them or their clients.
He says the provider did not want to impose a particular process on advisers but believes their view has now altered.
“It has taken us longer than was originally anticipated," he says.
"We are in a situation now where quite a number of advisers would like to move so we need to look at it in a different way. We need to make sure we have the capabilities, technology and people to support that move. We need to get the move right without creating disruption.”
The integration of the Skandia and Selestia platforms (following the purchase of Skandia by Selestia’s parent Old Mutual in early 2006) has been marred by a series of delays which exasperated advisers.
The platform eventually launched on August 15 2007. New MultiFunds business can be placed on Skandia Investment Solutions.
Paul Bruns and Elaine Parkes
3,000 left to transfer
Record numbers of people aged 90 plus
From 3 to 10 October