PA ANALYSIS: Is Barclays’ new platform the start of Fintech 2.0?

Added 28th November 2016

Barclays’ announcement on Monday that it has launched an execution-only platform should come as no surprise. But, it should serve as a reminder to wealth managers not to get too complacent.

PA ANALYSIS: Is Barclays’ new platform the start of Fintech 2.0?

Following a few months after Santander announced a similar online platform, it is fair to say the banks are slowly finding their way back into the retail investment space. The question for the broader financial services sector is, as Mark Polson, CEO of the Lang Cat put it: “What happens if they get it right this time?”

It is unlikely that either of these offerings has the likes of Hargreaves Lansdown and Charles Stanley quaking in their boots, but it will certainly make the sector more competitive from a new client acquisition perspective.

As Polson explained: “The advantage the banks have is that they have access to very large customer banks to whom they can market such a new service very effectively, which gets rid of some of the inhibiting factors that have affected smaller, start-up players.”

Discretionary wealth managers are even less likely to have taken the news as a direct threat to their business – which is as it should be, because these offerings are unlikely to compete head-to-head with a full-service wealth management business. What it does do, however, is up the ante from a technology perspective. And, this is where wealth managers and advisers should pay attention.

For James Alexander, director within the investment management team at KPMG UK, the shape of the banks’ re-entry is important.

“The banks have had some bad experiences in the past, particularly with face-to-face advice, so what they look to do in the future is inevitably going to be shaped by that,” he said.

While he believes it unlikely that there will be a return to the banc assurance model of old, he said: “They [the banks] recognise that the UK wealth management market is a very attractive one in which to be active because of changes like the recent pensions freedom announcements, the move to auto enrolment, and the shift from defined benefit to defined contribution schemes.”


Overseas earners will be key amidst 2017 inflation

Sponsored by Neptune

Overseas earners will be key amidst 2017 inflation...

A by-product of sterling weakness is inflation, and we expect this to continue to gather steam over the coming months, with energy and food prices the hardest hit....

Kames Income Hub


Vincent McEntegart, manager of the Kames Diversified Monthly Income Fund, explains how he aims to deliver a stable and sustainable income of 5% p.a.*, paid monthly, by investing in a range of asset classes

Square Mile Research

AXA Distribution Fund
AXA Distribution Fund

Talking Factsheets is a video service for users...

Visitor's Comments Add your comment

Add Your Comment

We won't publish your address

About Author

Geoff Candy

Group digital editor

Geoff Candy joined Portfolio Adviser as News Editor in May 2014. He has been a financial journalist and broadcaster since 2005 and, in that time has worked in both South Africa and the Netherlands, covering everything from high street retailers and construction companies to mining and insurance.



Investment Strategy




PA Europe 2017
PA Europe 2017

Thursday 11 May
Furniture Makers' Hall

PA Channel Islands 2017
PA Channel Islands 2017

Wednesday 24 May
Royal Yacht Hotel, Jersey

PA UK Equity 2017
PA UK Equity 2017

Thursday 15 June
Radisson Blu Edwardian Bloomsbury Street Hotel

PA Investment Trusts 2017
PA Investment Trusts 2017

Tuesday 20 June
Furniture Makers' Hall

Sponsored Content