Article date: 3 September 2015
- New platform gives customers more choice in how they make their investments
- The consumer platform complements Aviva’s existing adviser platform
- The initial product range includes investment account, ISA, and SIPP, with access to over 2,000 funds
- Allows the flexibility to draw down funds under the new pension flexibility rules
- Provides simple, straightforward and low-fee platform pricing
Aviva has launched a direct-to-consumer online platform to support customers who want to self-manage their investments in a simple and efficient way, particularly as they plan for their retirement.
The new online investment platform aims to give customers comprehensive yet easy-to-use options for managing their finances in one place. It sits alongside Aviva’s existing adviser platform, which has exceeded £7bn in assets under management. Aviva already provides customers with a broad range of retirement solutions including pensions, annuities, income drawdown and equity release.
With the new pension freedoms, people aged 55 years and over now have much greater freedom in how they manage and use pension pots. Aviva’s online consumer platform offers customers who are confident about their choices the ability to self-manage their financial decisions across a range of product choices, as well as providing comprehensive education to support them on their way.
Products available on the platform are:
- A self-invested personal pension (SIPP) account, offering a tax-advantaged retirement account with flexibility in the investments customers can choose. It provides drawdown functionality for when customers wish to start using their retirement savings in line with the new pension freedoms.
- The Aviva Investment ISA Account, which offers an easy way to invest in stocks and shares without paying income tax or capital gains tax.
- The Aviva Investment Account which offers a flexible account with access to a broad range of investments, typically for customers who have used their maximum ISA allowance.
- All of these accounts can be easily opened, accessed, and managed online. They also offer the same broad range of investments (over 2,000 unit trust and OEIC funds) as well as an interest-bearing cash account. The value of investments in all of these products can go down as well as up and customers may get back less than has been paid in.
- Customers will be able to see all of their investments in one place, along with any other Aviva products.
The new Aviva platform is supported by simple-to-use online tools that help consumers get a clear idea of how to plan and save for their retirement. These include My Retirement Planner, which estimates the future value of people’s personal pension plans and how much income these may provide in retirement; and a Life Expectancy Calculator, which gives an estimated life expectancy and length of retirement to help people plan ahead to make their money last.
Customers using the direct platform will be signposted to seek financial advice if they require it at key decision points, such as choosing whether to access their pension pot under the new pension freedom rules.
The consumer platform has a simple and transparent charging structure. Customers are not charged on entry to the platform or for choosing to leave it, should they wish to access their money or invest elsewhere. The charging structure for customers investing on the platform is:
- 0.40% for the first £50k of assets
- 0.35% for the next £200k of assets
- 0.25% for the next £250k of assets
- 0% on any assets over £500k
- Fund-based charges also apply.
The core management charge will apply to customers’ total assets (excluding cash) rather than to separate products. This means customers are more likely to fall into a lower price tier (based on their investment’s overall size) than if separate charges were applied per product.
Customers will also be able to transfer existing pensions and ISAs to the platform, allowing them to consolidate more assets on the platform and thus reach lower price tiers. Customers should be aware that the features and charges of products on the Aviva platform could be different to those of any products from which they transfer.
Rodney Prezeau, Aviva’s Consumer Platform Director for Retirement Solutions, said: “Saving for retirement has never been higher on the national agenda. By adding a direct platform to our retirement portfolio, we are committed to offering an unrivalled range of options for customers to invest and achieve the best outcome for their needs.
“The pension freedoms have brought wide-ranging choice and flexibility to people entering retirement. We understand that choice can also breed confusion, which is why the new platform’s charging structure will deliberately remain simple and transparent, with as few fees as possible.
“We strongly advocate that customers obtain full personal advice before making major decisions about their retirement, but we also recognise that this may not always be appropriate for some individuals or circumstances. Providing a direct channel alongside our adviser offering is about putting the customer in control of how they plan for retirement.”
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Notes to editors:
- Aviva provides life insurance, general insurance, health insurance and asset management to 34* million customers, across 16 markets worldwide
- In the UK we are the leading insurer serving one in every four households and have strong businesses in selected markets in Europe, Asia and Canada. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE100 index.
- Aviva’s asset management business, Aviva Investors, provides asset management services to both Aviva and external clients, and currently manages over £245 billion in assets.
- Aviva helps people save for the future and manage the risks of everyday life; we paid out £24.6 billion in benefits and claims in 2014.
- By serving our customers well, we are building a business which is strong and sustainable, which our people are proud to work for, and which makes a positive contribution to society.
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* Before the deduction of overlapping customers.