Industry Updates

AJ Bell to absorb Circa5000 clients on platform closure

Circa5000 will focus on the five ETFs it launched last June

Jamie Gordon

AJ Bell

AJ Bell is set to absorb the client accounts of impact investing specialist Circa5000 as the firm shuts its platform business.

Circa5000 contacted its ISA, JISA, GIA and pension holders on 9 February to confirm they were happy to move their accounts to AJ Bell, with investments set to be transferred automatically in specie on 19 April.

The firm said users who do not wish to transfer to AJ Bell must have their new provider submit a transfer request prior to 5pm on 11 March.

Circa5000 said it will focus its efforts on the five impact investing ETFs it launched last June but will cease offering services to buy and sell the ETFs through its own platform.

The group had 160,000 registered customers in June 2023, according to its Crowdcube fundraiser. It raised £1m through the crowdfunding campaign which gave the platform a valuation of £15.7m.

It said its products will continue to trade on the London Stock Exchange and will be available on other platforms.

The firm added it will continue to collect automated monthly payments until 11 March, after which point monthly payments will be cancelled and account holders will be able to set up monthly contributions after the transfer date.

Circa5000 will collect platform fees for the final time on 8 March. As part of the transfer, users will have their £1 subscription fee removed and platform fees reduced from 0.45% to 0.25%.

However, AJ Bell carries regular dealing charges of £1.50 and ad hoc dealing charges of £5.

In a statement to clients, Jane Mooney, user experience consultant at Circa5000, said: “We are making this change as we have decided that the best path forward is to focus our business on the five Circa5000 ETFs that launched in June 2023.

“This is a big decision for us and not one we take lightly. We feel like this is the best way to continue our mission of making impact investing accessible to everyone and is ultimately the best decision to provide a long-term and secure home for you and your investments.

“We have got to know the AJ Bell team over a number of years and are confident that they have the scale, technology and customer service levels to continue to deliver a great investment platform for you.”

An AJ Bell spokesperson added: "We are pleased to welcome customers of Circa5000 to AJ Bell’s low-cost investment platform, providing them with a simple, straightforward way to continue managing their investment accounts."

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