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Sesame plans summer launch for Bankhall service

Sesame plans summer launch for Bankhall service

Sesame Bankhall Group is overhauling the service it offers its directly authorised Bankhall advisers with the launch a new one-stop-shop service, Pathway Solution, planned to go live in June.

Stephen Gazard, managing director of Sesame Bankhall, told FTAdviser Pathway provides advisers with a back office solution “out of a box”.

Professional indemnity insurance will be provided by Howden, back office solutions by Intelligent Office and research and investment risk profiling by Distribution Technology.

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The move follows several years of turmoil for the adviser business - including the closure of its investment adviser network after several regulatory fines, and a widespread strategic review, which has recently concluded.

“Now we’ve completed that my focus has moved towards Bankhall,” Mr Gazard said.

Sesame Bankhall Group has been trying to “rationalise” advisers’ client banks, and is looking at its propositions and bringing them from a large number to two or three, he said.

“At the moment we have Assist, which deals with more desk based remote relationships, Orbit which provides a menu to fact find for individual firms and Signature, which represents nationals and networks.”

Mr Gazard added the organisation had continually been seeking to integrate Intelligent Office as its back office solution alongside Distribution Technology for its research and risk profiling.

“That proposition has emerged more strongly over the last 12 to 18 months and is now called Pathway Solution. The [final] mixing together of all of [the different proposittions] will happen in June,” he said.

“We will take data from Intelligent Office into Distribution Technology so that the risks are significantly lower which results in a discount in professional indemnity insurance.”

Additionally, Sesame Bankhall Group will be employing a new head of client propositions from a competitor who will begin on 1 May 2016, but the group are currently unable to disclose his name.

Earlier this month, Andy Briggs, chief executive of Aviva UK and Ireland Life, backed a revamped Sesame after Aviva forced an overhaul at the advice group following its takeover of Sesame parent Friends Life last year.

Speaking at that time, Mr Briggs made assurances that “Sesame has had a great year,” after a strategic review into the advice firm concluded last year, and saw the Sesame network exit investment advice.

His comments suggested a turnaround in Aviva’s attitude towards Sesame, after a damning note to shareholders at the start of last year and ahead of the Friends acquisition, stated Aviva would not provide “open-ended” financial support to the lost-making advice network, and without a return to profit it would cease to trade.

ruth.gillbe@ft.com