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AJ Bell hails business model strength as customers gather on platform

20th Jul 2023 12:11

(Alliance News) - AJ Bell PLC on Thursday said its customer numbers and assets increased in the recent quarter, and it expects to capitalise on future growth opportunities in the platform market.

The Manchester-based retail investment platform provider said customer numbers for the platform business closed at 465,614 for the quarter that ended June 30 - AJ Bell's financial third quarter - up 12% from 417,503 for the same period in 2022.

Advised customers increased 10% to close on June 30 at 156,368 from 141,856 the previous year, while direct-to-customer platform customers rose by 12% to 309,246 from 275,647. Assets under administration closed up 10% at GBP69.8 billion from GBP63.5 billion.

"In the advised market there has been a moderation in transfer activity as advisers and their clients exercise more caution in the face of ongoing uncertainty in the macroeconomic environment," explained Chief Executive Officer Michael Summersgill.

D2C momentum, meanwhile, "remained strong after the tax year end as customers took advantage of their new annual ISA and pension allowances".

For AJ Bell Investments, assets under management increased 72% to GBP4.3 billion on June 30 from GBP2.5 billion. Net inflows increased 33% to GBP400 million from GBP300 million.

"Continued growth in customer numbers and net inflows of [GBP1.1] billion onto our platform in the quarter once again demonstrate the strength of our dual-channel platform model. Assets under administration on our platform now stand at a record high," Summersgill said.

Going forward, the CEO said: "We continue to see significant opportunities for growth in the platform market and believe we are well positioned to capitalise on these in both the advised and D2C segments."

Shares in AJ Bell were down 0.7% in London on Thursday at 330.20 pence. The stock is up 15% over the past 12 months.

By Emma Curzon, Alliance News reporter

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