AJ Bell has announced that its customer number have increased by 12% to 183,483 from 164,557 at 30 September 2017, while the firms profit before tax also rose by 24% to £13.9m compared to the first half of 2017 with £11.2m.
In its interim results for the six months ended 31 March 2018, AJ Bell also reported strong new business growth with net platform inflows of £3.5bn, a 17% increase from the first half of 2017. The firm’s customer retention figures have remained high at 95%.
Assets under administration for the company grew by 5% to £41.8bn, despite a 4% fall in the FTSE all share index, which it has said is principally driven by the performance of the platform business.
As a result of AJ Bell’s strong performance, the board has declared an interim dividend payment of £0.14 per share, a 10% increase compared to the interim dividend in the first half of 2017.
AJ Bell chief executive Andy Bell said: “These are the most profitable interim results in our history and are a great endorsement of our strategy and market position.
“The UK retail investment and savings market continues to display strong growth and investment platforms are central to this. Our brand heritage, platform technology and positioning across both advised and direct-to-consumer markets enables us to benefit from this long term growth story.
“The need for people to provide financially for their future has never been greater and our focus is on making it easier for our customers to invest. Our propositions are designed to be easy to use, at a competitive price and we continue to focus on delivering a great customer experience, which is rewarded by the loyalty of our customers.
“We are well placed to continue our growth trajectory and are progressing well with our plans for a premium listing on the London Stock Exchange later this year or early 2019.”
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