Protection 

Protection challenger Guardian launches platform

Protection challenger Guardian launches platform

Guardian Financial Services has launched its protection platform to advisers and their clients.

As of today (31 August), intermediaries can register with the protection challenger online with immediate access to life and critical illness products.

The platform, Protection Builder, aims to help advisers build bespoke client policies with applications using a single question set and a dashboard showing the application's status.

The product was piloted with four distributor partners since June and has been in the pipeline for the past two and a half years.

Simon Davis, chief executive of Guardian Financial Services, said there was a gap for a new provider in the market, which had been relatively consistently serviced over the past decade, and said the market was open to being disrupted.

He said: "We saw a number of challenges in terms of the protection gap that we all know is pretty big - there was a question to be asked as to why this gap was persisting and why it was not being addressed as quickly as we hoped it would be.

"So we started looking at aspects from the very start of the engagement process to the end of the process - from the initial client conversation to the final claims and post claim process."

He added: "We absolutely believe in the value of advice, supporting advisers in their ability to get customers protected."

Andy Peters, distribution director at Guardian, said it was important the provider worked with its partners to make sure the technology fitted with adviser business models.

He said: "We have worked closely with our portal partners and our pilot distributors, to ensure that where our product features differ from the market, it’s easy for advisers to compare quotes and pass the relevant client information through to our online application.

"We have invested heavily in technology to create a great adviser experience - we expect our online application process and underwriting rules to allow the majority of applications to be underwritten and give instant decisions online."

Mr Peters added: "Yet technology is only part of our story. We are a people business, and technology will never replace the need for one-to-one relationships and truly personal service."

rachel.addison@ft.com

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