A NEWLY-LAUNCHED investment platform for independent financial advisers (IFAs) is looking to open up its offering to the peer-to-peer finance space.
GrowthInvest was rebranded last month from equity crowdfunding website Seed EIS Platform to diversify the platform to IFAs, giving them – and their clients – access to a wide range of investment products including single companies, funds and managed portfolios.
“Over the past couple of years we have seen increasing interest in tax-efficient investment and the fast-growing alternative finance sector,” said managing director Daniel Rodwell.
“We believe that this, coupled with the rise of direct-to-consumer crowdfunding platforms and now the likely trajectory of the UK economy post-Brexit, potentially leaves advisers in a difficult position with their more affluent clients. We aim to provide a simple solution to their requirements in this increasingly important area.”
IFAs can decide how their clients use the site, such as whether they have their own log-in. They can review what their clients do on the platform as well.
GrowthInvest only offers IFAs access to equity investments at the moment, but expanding it to include debt-based offerings such as P2P is already on the agenda.
“It’s something we’ve had discussions about with people and we will consider it going forward,” said Rodwell.
“In a few months’ time I think we’ll look at opening it up. This is a home for tax-efficient and alternative investments and P2P finance is part of that,” said operations director David Lovell.
“Whether that be with an existing P2P lender or off our own bat remains to be seen.”
The IFA community has traditionally been rather frosty towards the P2P sector, which the industry argues is due to a lack of education and understanding around the products rather than an innately higher risk for consumers compared to other types of investments.