Misys has secured a multi-million pound investment from Friends Provident, Norwich Union and Scottish Widows in return for a 40% stake in its AssureWeb electronic trading portal for independent financial advisors (IFA).
Under the agreements, the three life and pensions providers will invest a total of £9.2 million over three and a half years for their stake in Assuresoft Limited, the holding company of AssureWeb, and board representation. Misys will hold the remaining 60% share in the company and will retain operational responsibility for the portal.
In addition, £16.8 million will be payable over three and a half years by Friends Provident, Norwich Union and Scottish Widows for services related to the use of AssureWeb.
Misys says it is also in discussion with a small number of additional key product providers who have expressed an interest in joining the initial three investors in the initiative and sharing the 40% equity stake.
The funding will be partly used to enhance the portal, which will link to mi-solution, the Misys IFA compliance and point of sale software, say the companies.
The next phase of development for AssureWeb includes expansion of the development team at the technology centre in Cheltenham and enhancing the functionality of the portal. The business will be run by the existing management team, led by managing director, Helen O'Dea.
Ivan Martin, CEO, Misys financial services division, notes: "We are moving AssureWeb to the next phase, putting it on a sound commercial basis, with revenue and profit growth targets that all parties agree are realistic in a new era of electronic transactions."
He says AssureWeb will continue to provide open and non-discriminatory access to all product providers and all IFAs.
Peter Hales, sales & marketing director, Norwich Union, says: "AssureWeb is a compelling technology proposition for product providers and IFAs. End-to-end trading and the accelerating move towards e-only products will benefit providers, IFAs and their clients, through a quicker, more efficient and streamlined applications process."