atomos, the advice-led wealth manager, has appointed WTW to provide multi-asset investment solutions for its UK-based retail investment portfolios. The agreement, based on a three-year exclusivity period for this service, enables atomos to take advantage of WTW’s award winning 150 strong global investment research and portfolio management team in order to strengthen the investment propositions it can offer clients across the UK.
atomos, which rebranded from Sanlam Wealth in September, helps individuals, families, businesses and charities to organise and grow their wealth. The company has around 8,000 clients with £7bn of assets under management.
The company’s appointment of WTW will enable it to offer benefits to clients that are usually only afforded to large institutional investors. These include:
· Access to fund managers not normally available to retail investors
· More robust investment management and risk controls
· Integration of ESG considerations in investment strategies
· The ability to give its clients access to alternatives and private markets
These factors, together with WTW’s access to an even more diverse and innovative range of asset classes and new investment ideas, have led to historically higher returns for WTW’s institutional clients compared to atomos’ peers in the retail investment market.
WTW will provide support to atomos on its three core investment propositions:
1. Investment management through five existing UCITS funds along a spectrum of risk profiles (Multi-Asset Fund solution or “MAF”).
2. Model Portfolio Solutions (“MPS”) supported on retail investor platforms.
3. Discretionary portfolio fund management (“DFM”) for high net-worth individuals supported on retail investor platforms.
Haig Bathgate, Head of Investments, atomos, said: “Our purpose is to deliver an exceptional service and experience to our clients, and our strategic alliance with WTW is testament to this aim.
“We want to better cater for the challenges of a new market environment, and want to build and strengthen the proposition we offer to our clients. We want to offer clients a service that is bold and forward-looking, while maintaining the personalised bedrock that wealth management is built on.
“Bringing in WTW’s vast global expertise in investments across all geographies and asset classes, as well as their industry leading investment research and portfolio management, enables our clients to benefit from institutional economies of scale and expertise. The breadth of investment expertise available at WTW is beyond anything else available in the wealth management market and the company has a track record of driving down investment costs, helping enhance investor returns.
“The input we receive from WTW will help us achieve our ambition to become the first truly hybrid wealth manager, with access to intuitive digital apps, high quality investment solutions and personalised support and relationship from portfolio managers and financial planners.
“We believe that sustainable investment is central to successful long-term investment outcomes and are passionate about the role of our clients’ capital in transforming the economy to net zero. Our strategic engagement will also ensure that clients’ investment strategies address climate risks through sustainable investment approaches. WTW plays a key role in supporting ESG and working with them will enhance our investment approaches which will be aligned to the United Nation’s Principles of Responsible Investing and the Financial Reporting Council’s Stewardship Code.”
Mark Calnan, Head of Investments for Europe, WTW, said: “This appointment is very exciting for WTW. Our brief is to improve performance over the long term, but to enable atomos to provide their clients with access to a broader, more diversified set of asset classes that adhere to strong principles of sustainable investing. Ultimately, we’re here to help atomos generate the savings outcomes their clients need whilst improving the planet and society for future generations. Retail savers are fast appreciating that, if they invest in a thoughtful way, their savings can make a difference.
“There is a strong cultural alignment between our core values and those of atomos’ leadership. The leadership team has identified that the current approach to investment management in the retail market is not serving the needs of its clients; and they have been brave in taking action. We’re confident others will follow, recognising that the most effective way to generate the savings outcomes retail clients need is to outsource to third parties like WTW who have the scale, investment rigour and dedicated resources to continue to deliver investment returns throughout the market cycle, not just when markets are rising.
“This engagement is another step towards applying our investment expertise to as broad a range of asset owners as possible to help us achieve our wider mission to change investment for the better.”