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WH Ireland to use SEI platform

WH Ireland to use SEI platform

WH Ireland’s deal with SEI will allow it to grow, according to chief executive Richard Killingbeck.

The London-based company has agreed to a long-term contract with SEI to use its wealth platform.

Mr Killingbeck said the deal was part of a strategic shift at WH Ireland away from traditional stockbroking towards more holistic wealth management.

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He said: “Let’s fast forward a year and say the migration has gone smoothly and our assets are on the SEI platform - we still have a fundamental issue and we are still too small.

“Fees are generally under pressure so it then comes down to the issue of scale and what the right size is for a private client business.

“The minimum level to be an independent wealth management business is £5bn and we are at about £2.7bn of assets under management so we need to seek growth through acquisitions but also organic growth.”

Mr Killingbeck said the scalability of SEI’s platform was a “hugely important” reason for his companies decision to enter the deal.

He also said WH Ireland is not interested in using technology to allow clients to self-select or use robo-advice, saying his company’s use of it will be “like an iceberg” - largely unseen.

Brett Williams, managing director of SEI Wealth Platform, UK private banking, said: “We are hugely scalable and we need to be. Any business that is going to grow needs to be on technology that is scalable.

“Many of our clients have gone through this growth.

“For a single business to keep up with changes in technology is really difficult and to upgrade systems, which might be 15-years-old is extremely expensive and time-consuming.”

SEI’s UK private banking business already counts Towry, Brewin Dolphin and Tilney Bestinvest among its clients.