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Frenkel Topping sets sights on app launch this year

Frenkel Topping sets sights on app launch this year

Advice firm Frenkel Topping expects to launch a client-facing app later this year as the firm has set its sights on digitalisation during the lockdown period. 

Richard Fraser, group chief executive of the advice firm which specialises in asset protection for clients who have been awarded compensation payments, said the app launch featured at the top of the company's agenda. 

Speaking with FTAdviser Mr Fraser said: "As we went into this period of lockdown we got the team to get every single email address from 1200 clients and it's made that communication with clients so much easier.

"How much easier would it be if we had an app which could instead send notifications to the client. 

"We are so used to going on to iPad and transferring money from bank accounts, managing direct debits - all the things you'd expect to do through your bank. Why can't a client expect to do that with a financial adviser?"

Mr Fraser said Frenkel Topping administers about 2000 withdrawals a year for its clients, something which the app is expected to speed up and make more efficient. 

He added: "Under Mifid II we have to send quarterly valuations out, well by the time the client gets them [in the post] they are out of date and useless.

"Whereas if we could upload them onto the app and clients have instant access, it makes the whole process more efficient."

Rules under Mifid II also require advisers to inform a client, before the end of that business day, if their portfolio has dropped by 10 per cent or more compared with its valuation at the beginning of the quarterly reporting period.

Mr Fraser added: "Because of the nature of our clients, because they come through a personal injury or clinical negligence case, our average case size is probably a lot higher than most IFAs'.

"I'd love us to be in a position where as part of the on-boarding process we give clients a tablet with the app preloaded and show them how to use it - it would make the whole process so much easier for them and us."

It has already been a busy year for Frenkel Topping, which in February partnered with a law firm specialising in personal injuries in a bid to shake up investing in the market. 

In the same month it agreed a joint venture with an advice firm in a deal which would see its discretionary fund management services offered to external IFAs for the first time. 

rachel.mortimer@ft.com 

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