The major platform providers are pleading with the industry to make platform re-registration a simpler process.
The Platform Group, which consists of Cofunds, Fidelity FundsNetwork, Skandia, and Standard Life, says the complexity of the current process renders the move impossible.
Not only is customer access difficult, they say, but units are susceptible to go missing, particularly in times of market volatility.
Rob Fisher, head of sales and marketing at Fidelity FundsNetwork, said: “If you have an ISA or a PEP with a fund company and want to re-register it on a platform, the contents are re-registered but there is no break in the investment. It is a simple process.
“But this is very different when you are trying to transfer from one platform to another. It is a similar process, but you have to do it on a multiple level.
“It’s just not possible to do it in any volume because it’s just too complicated. If you get it wrong, customer access would be difficult, units could go missing.”
Fisher says the demand for platform-to-platform re-registration is growing, although still not particularly big, and says something needs to be done sooner rather than later.
“Demand is larger than it was, he says. “But it is still relatively low. But we don’t think this is something that is beyond the industry.”
David Dalton-Brown, head of Fidelity FundsNetwork, said his firm is working with others to rectify the problem.
“The Platform Group has committed to finding an efficient platform to platform re-registration process as the current process is resource intensive, involves multiple forms being completed, requires multiple manual reconciliation layers, and is not timely,” he says.
“We also need to improve ‘standard’ re-registration from fund providers to platforms.”
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