Nutmeg unveils business plan “evolution”

Nutmeg has revealed ambitious plans for its future product offerings following the firm’s decision to enter the advisory market.

The direct-to-consumer online discretionary manager is planning to develop a drawdown offering to go along its existing personal pension accumulation product, as well as ethical and social investing vehicles and joint accounts for married couples.

The firm is also considering developing a robo-advice service, although there are no details yet on how this would be integrated into its current offering.

Nutmeg chief executive Nick Hungerford says that after face-to face advice and DIY solutions, “this new third way of online automated wealth management needs time.”

In August, Nutmeg announced it was planning to offer financial advice alongside its D2C service.

The fim plans to service clients online and via telephone, while face-to-face appointments will also be available if requested.

However, Hungerford says the advice operation is more “an evolution” of what Nutmeg currently offers rather than the firm taking “a big step into the advice market”.

At the time of the advice service announcement Hungerford said: “Nutmeg has become a trusted steward of investments for thousands of customers, focusing on our key values of low costs, ease of use and maximum transparency.

“Our customers often ask us for advice but to date we have been unable to help them as much as we would like to.”

However, Hungerford says the company hasn’t yet decided how the advice service should be structured, also admitting he has been struggling to find “good quality” advisers.

Hungerford is planning to recruit advisers within the next month, but hasn’t confirmed how many staff the new operation will need.

The company is also looking to recruit more staff for its IT and customer support departments as part of its plan to grow its personnel from 70 to 120, and is set to open a new office in London soon.

Although the advice market is very much focused on the new pension reform, the chief executive thinks that “it is not all about pensions”.

Hungerford says: “We are also committed to financial education and that doesn’t have to be online or digital as long as you get people involved. You can do that also in shops via self check-outs.”