Software group Misys has announced that it is to build on its Screentrade insurance brand with the launch of a new financial services brand called theformula.
Theformula, developed by Misys Interactive Trading, Misys's internet services division, will offer customers a basket of products from a range of providers using "compare, inform and buy" technologies. It will be available through the internet, interactive television and a specialist contact centre.
Roll-out of the product is planned for the first half of next year and the target is to sell one million products within three years. The initial products to be offered will be motor, home and travel insurance and investments and life assurance.
Other products will be added throughout 2001.
Paul Charles, theformula's editor-in-chief, said there was a move towards "open finance" with companies offering other companies' products as well as their own. He cited the example of First Direct which recently became an independent financial adviser.
Jasper McMahon, managing director of MIT, said: "The days are over when we only had the choice of buying one product from one company.
"Theformula will plug the gap by allowing any of us to make comparisons between providers, receive full details of products, ask questions and, crucially, buy in our own time without sales pressures."
Charles said: "Theformula has the potential to become the first truly impartial personal finance brand."
Contrary to some reports, Screentrade is not being killed off. It is to evolve into a fully-functional business-to-business and consumer operation with companies able to tailor it for their own customers.
"We are talking to some very high profile retail and financial names who are interested in putting Screentrade on their own sites," said Charles.