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Netwealth on the acquisition hunt in 2014

With FOFA's grandfathering provisions to be amended, Netwealth Advice Group is in discussions with a number of financial planning groups looking to join its licence, in what it anticipates will be a "busy time" for the industry.

Speaking to ifa, Netwealth executive director Matt Heine said "building awareness" of the financial planning dealer group arm of the business - which includes licensees Bridgeport Financial Services and Financial Planning Services Australia - is a top priority for the year ahead.

"Now that grandfathering has changed, we’ll be pretty busy there and there’s a number of fairly major practices that we’re chatting to," he said.

Mr Heine also said the market could expect the rollout of Netwealth Investments' integrated separately-managed account (SMA) in mid-2014.

While there has been a surge of interest in managed accounts in recent months, the SMA market has been dominated by standalone products, he said.

“Everything we’re developing has been about saying that it should be an integrated offering – you’ve got your managed funds, you’ve got your direct equities and then you can allocate to portfolios within the broader portfolio,” said Mr Heine.

Netwealth has had a product known as SMART (Sophisticated Modelling and Rebalancing Technology) in place since 2010, which allows advisers with their own discretionary licences to run industrial-scale managed portfolios.


"The new product that we’re building at the moment – looking to launch mid-year – is actually an integrated SMA where you’ll be able to access a range of professionally managed portfolios,” he said.

Advisers will be able to access a number of “large name” managers to construct portfolios, while Netwealth dynamically rebalances the portfolios in the background – removing the need for the adviser to hold a discretionary licence, Mr Heine said.