AMP SMSF sees traditional inflows
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Kate Kachor is a journalist with InvestorDaily, a Morningstar publication.
AMP Limited's (AMP) new self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) division has experienced interest from existing clients' traditional superannuation, however, the unit's focus is more about creating a new market for AMP advisers and clients, its managing director said.
AMP SMSF managing director Paul Sainsbury said since launching in July this year, the division, through its SMSF offerings, has gained inflows from the financial services giant's more traditional superannuation products. Sainsbury did not reveal the total of inflows.
"Obviously there is, there's movement, but what we see for AMP is that is opening up a new market for its advisers and for its customers," Sainsbury said.
"So this is much more about an extension to our existing product offerings than it is about substituting our products."
Speaking at a demonstration of the company's Ascend SMSF administration offering yesterday, Sainsbury said the division's role is to "work with accountants and financial planners" to provide services and solutions.
"We know that trustees of self-managed super funds want more control to manage their financial affairs," he said.
"We know that they want advice to manage the investment decisions that they need to make. We know that because the research is increasingly showing customers are seeking support of a financial adviser to help them with those investment decisions."
In July, AMP SMSF launched a new version of its Ascend SMSF service to its financial advice network, now supported on the adminstration side by SuperIQ. Prior to the relaunch, Ascend used the adminstration service of Smartsuper.
"Since we've converted across [from Smartsuper] we've had very strong support from our advisers and very strong interest in the product and good business growth," he said.
In response to specific questions about Ascend SMSF's fee structure, Sainsbury said it varied to the clients' needs.
"All SMSFs incur costs to both set up and to run. I'd say it's fair to say it's a market competitive proposition from a price point of view," he said.
"But there is a wide variety of methods of charging for SMSFs in this part of the industry."
According to documents on Ascend's website, among the set-up fees for the service include $550 to set up a new fund, with the cost for existing funds being $1650 per year.
Fees for establishing a company to act as a corporate trustee is $990, while the cost for converting from a small Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (ARPA) fund to an SMSF is $660.
Asked how much AMP Group had invested in the company's SMSF division, Sainsbury remained tight-lipped.
"From an AMP Group point of view, we've announced to the market that it's not material," he said.
"It's early days for us so we're really interested in actually pushing the growth of the business and also entering into a new sector."
In June, AMP announced it had set up a new SMSF division and acquired SMSF business Cavendish Group.
Australia's SMSF sector is the country's largest superannuation sector, with current assets of around $430 billion.