Today at the ballroom in Fullerton Hotel, iFAST launched a new platform called IFAST Global Prestige (IGP). The IGP is a B2B platform for advisers targeting at the High Networth (accredited investor) market. The IGP offers:
1. Diversified range of investment products such as unit trusts, stocks, ETFs, bonds, hedge funds, exotics like agricultural land and wine and fine art;
2. Wrap account (presumably this means free switching) for all asset classes and recurring management fees for advisers to better align client and adviser’s interest;
3. Discretionary account available as an option;
4. 400 Singapore approved retail unit trusts
5. Carries MAS Restricted Funds such as hedge funds, wines, life settlements, thematic, etc
6. Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs);
7. From mid-2010, availability of stocks, bonds and structured products through partnership with brokerage firms and other institutions for stock exchanges of Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and the US. Bonds from Singapore and International will also be available;
8. Regular Saving Plan (RSP);
9. Regular Drawdown Plan and remittance services. This is to permit clients to make regular withdrawal of their capital at defined interval and as well as allowance for the Regular Remittance Service (RRS) for remitting payment overseas;
10. Fund of Funds (FOFs) Creation Service including assistance in trust service to help exempt fund managers;
11. Research Support via Research Tools, articles, presentations and webcasts;
12. Investment Planning Support;
13. IGP regular monthly updates;
14. Regular updates from fund houses;
15. Development courses for advisers;
16. Monthly client dinners;
17. Ask the Fund Manager Session;
18. Wine Appreciation Sessions for both advisers and clients to try out different grades of wine;
19. Visits to newly-opened integrated resorts, art museums and others;
Wow, the IGP is really massive. This platform is quite massive but the question is the cost. Will it be more competitive compared with open-architecture style portfolio bonds offered by Skandia’s Executive Investment Account (EIA) and Friends Provident Global Portfolio? Given that iFAST is known for its seamless transaction platform, I am sure the IGP will take off like a rocket.
During the presentation, Jack Chin – Manager of the Investment Planning – mentioned that ETFs and index funds are also available. Not many details were given except to say that all 39 ETFs available on SGX are available. (It is a known fact that I am not a fan of SGX listed ETFs.) He mentioned ETFs from Vanguard and Eurizon Capital are also available. However, as far as I know Vanguard do not offer any ETF outside United States as it is well known that Vanguard is very late in the game of ETF. I think he probably was referring to index mutual funds. Now the question is I never heard of Eurizon Capital and not to mention it as an index fund provider! I guess there is always something new to learn even if I have been a fan of index funds for a long time.
My problem with the IGP is that it is only for accredited investors. So not likely will use this platform very often.
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