Service Awards 2016 - Investment category

Service Awards 2016 - Investment category

Service Awards 16 Investment category

1. Royal London Asset Management

The asset management arm of Royal London was voted by our readers as the best of the best when it comes to adviser services in the investment provider category.

In the past year, Royal London Asset Management (RLAM) strengthened ties with its intermediary partners by adding regional relationship managers to its wholesale team to broaden coverage cross the UK, according to Phil Reid, head of wholesale at RLAM.

From a product perspective, the company launched a suite of six risk-rated global multi-asset portfolios, offering a blend of active and passive equity with exposure to UK commercial property and commodities. Mr Reid said the range generated “strong” interest from the intermediary market.

He added: “In terms of service, we commented frequently on Brexit to ensure advisers are clear on the RLAM perspective and our views on the potential impact across asset classes and our funds, which was well received.

“We believe in the importance of getting out to see our clients with fund managers. We undertook a series of seminars covering our UK Equity Income Fund, which was well attended with some interesting discussions.”

Looking ahead, RLAM plans to bolster existing services and initiatives that generated positive feedback from advisers, including video and webinars as well as its ‘Income Activists’ blog, which explores key themes affecting income investors.

RLAM recorded an appearance in the five-star band for the third consecutive year, meaning it has been in the top service category for four of the past five years.

2. Parmenion 

Parmenion services remain ever popular among advisers, with the company securing the coveted five-star rating for the fourth time in consecutive years.

Continued success at the prestigious awards ceremony does not mean that Parmenion is resting on its laurels, according to Patrick Ingram, head of corporate relationships.

He said the company strengthened its client services team with staff additions and by installing upgrades to adviser-facing technology to facilitate easier advising and reporting.

He added: “The fact that technologists, operations and client service staff sit within a few feet of each other makes for a better experience for our users.

"There is great internal communication and we have the resources to iron out issues as fast as possible.”

The levy for the use of Parmenion’s Sipp wrap is another plus for intermediaries, according to Mr Ingram. The platform was built and managed in-house, meaning it does not carry additional charges to the standard custody.

Mr Ingram said Parmenion won plaudits from advisers as well as third party analysts with the launch of a product suite called the Guardian range, which addresses income drawdown challenges.

He added: “Parmenion has the advantage of having its investment portfolios, service proposition and technology designed, developed and written at outset by individuals with a long history of working within IFA businesses and in all avenues of those businesses. We built something that works well in supporting the daily lives and routines of advisers.”