• AXA UK to cease retail banking advice service

    April 15th 2013. Posted in Wealth

    AXA UK has today announced that it will cease to offer face to face financial advice in the branches of its UK banking partners – The Co-operative Banking Group and Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks.

    The decision to withdraw the bank branch advice service in the UK follows a strategic review into face to face financial advice models that would meet the needs of bank customers and the requirements of the new regulatory environment.

    Paul Evans, Group Chief Executive, AXA UK, said: "AXA UK remains a strong advocate of consumers being able to access affordable advice for their particular investment needs. Following similar announcements by major retail banks, we are very disappointed that AXA UK must also now withdraw this service having not found a model which balanced the regulatory requirement that the service be profitable in its own right, whilst setting advice fees at an affordable level."

    The decision to close this service will result in the loss of approximately 450 AXA UK roles and a period of individual consultation has commenced. AXA UK has been consulting with bank partners, the union Unite, and management forum representatives throughout this process and will continue to do so.

    Paul Evans added: "I would like to thank everyone who has worked so hard as part of our branch-based advice team over the past nine years. Although we will no longer offer our face to face financial planning service in the UK branches of our banking partners, we want to reassure all customers that their existing life and savings products will continue to work hard for them and will be serviced through our UK call centres in the future."

    This decision does not affect the administration and servicing of any existing AXA products. Any customers with questions should contact the service team for account or policy enquiries on 0845 300 4177.

    AXA UK also operates an appointed representative model with West Bromwich Building Society. Following the announcement today, AXA UK will continue to support this arrangement whilst West Bromwich transitions to its new model.

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    The AXA Group is a worldwide leader in insurance and asset management, with more than 163,000 employees serving 102 million clients in 57 countries. In 2012, IFRS revenues amounted to Euro 90.1 billion and IFRS underlying earnings to Euro 4.3 billion. AXA had Euro 1,116 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2012.

    In the UK AXA operates through a number of business units including: AXA Wealth, AXA Commercial Lines and Personal Intermediary, AXA Personal Direct and Partnerships, AXA PPP healthcare, AXA Ireland and an independent distribution business Bluefin. AXA employs over 12,000 staff in the UK.

    The AXA ordinary share is listed on compartment A of Euronext Paris under the ticker symbol CS (ISN FR 0000120628 - Bloomberg: CS FP - Reuters: AXAF.PA). AXA's American Depository Share is also quoted on the OTC QX platform under the ticker symbol AXAHY.

    The AXA Group is included in the main international SRI indexes, such as Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) and FTSE4GOOD.

    It is a founding member of the UN Environment Programme's Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) Principles
    for Sustainable Insurance and a signatory of the UN Principles for Responsible Investment.