Fidelity is to spend £250m across its UK platform business over the next five years as part of a plan to enhance its open architecture proposition and dominate the distribution landscape.
This includes a new fund manager-focused programme called Access which will see the platform work more closely with participating asset managers to promote their products to its customers globally.
The Access programme will provide enhanced marketing and relationship support in exchange for access to the lowest cost share classes available. Groups which join will be able to get closer to end users, benefiting from Fidelity’s 1.1m-strong retail investor base in the UK and the 10,000 advisers using the platform.
As part of the deal, Fidelity will ramp up its marketing activities to users of its UK platform business – which includes Funds Network, its personal investing business, and its defined contribution arm.
Members of the Access programme will also get much more information about Fidelity’s own plans, alongside greater access to its entire business, including senior staff and fund managers.
Ed Dymott (pictured), head of business development and strategy at Fidelity Worldwide Investment, said: “Fund managers have become more and more intermediated and further away from their end buyers than ever before.
“Now, through the Access programme, we can help them get much closer to those customers once again.”
Its major £250m spend over the next five years will help Fidelity prepare for the huge cultural shift in the UK savings market which is developing apace.
“The industry is changing hugely as a result of regulatory reform, consumer behaviour and auto-enrolment,” Dymott said.
“70% of the wealth in the world is held by the baby-boomer generation, and in the next decade all of them will be in retirement, so it is a huge focus for us.”
The platform is making its move amid a rush by rivals to launch more restricted propositions.