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Class Super developing beyond super

SMSF administration software specialist Class Super has said it would spend the second half of the year building out its offering outside of the superannuation space to allow users to gain integration with other investment vehicles.

“We’re doing a lot in the non-super space by looking at the current offering in terms of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act space around investment portfolio management, but then how it can be broadened out to deal with trusts and other investment vehicles,” Class Super chief executive Kevin Bungard told selfmanagedsuper.

“And how we can better integrate that with adviser tools and some of the other accounting systems, like practice management systems and so forth, to essentially build out a more comprehensive wealth accounting platform.

“That will be a strong [focus] for us in the next half year and beyond.

“The consistent feedback we get from practices is that they love what we’re doing in the super space and they’d really like to be able to apply those same tools in the non-super space to bring that together in a way they can service their clients more effectively across whatever investment vehicles they’re using.”

However, Class Super was not looking to enter the financial planning software space, Bungard said.

“We integrate with those tools – we have integration with Xplan, Midwinter and a number of the other tools, but we want to extend that integration out and really try to give people the tools to manage the clients’ wealth and investment in and outside of super,” he said.

“We did a soft launch [of the build out] at the end of last year in terms of starting to workshop with practices around what we had at that point.

“Since then we’ve released a number of new features, such as performance reporting, income estimation and a number of others that are more focused on strategy and advice, and giving them the view they need and the input for the advice process, but again we’re not looking to become the planning tool.”

He added that a key requirement for Class Super was ensuring information within accounting systems was available in the formats advisers used.

“Historically it’s been very hard to get up-to-date numbers for some of these things, so being able to provide that is critical and we very much see that as part of our role, to provide that input,” he said.

“If that then is pulled into systems like Xplan or Midwinter, then the rest of the planning and strategy can be done with those tools.”

Commenting on Class Super’s decision to undertake an initial public offering (IPO) this year, he said: “For the second half of the year, a big focus for us as a business is obviously around the IPO and it has taken up a fair bit of time in terms of what’s required to get ready for that.

“At this point, we can’t talk a lot about what we’re doing other than the target date, which is October, November.”

While Class Super was focused on only SMSFs when the business was first established, it was still very committed to the space and would continue developments there too, he said.

“The [initiatives] that we are doing still apply to the SMSF space – being able to improve performance reporting and predictions of income – they’re useful things for SMSFs, particularly if they’re in pension mode,” he said.

“Those capabilities definitely have value to the SMSF space, but they’re also generally applicable across the board.

“We started with an objective to bring scalability to the SMSF space, so it was only really that as we progressed that clients kept saying to us Class Super is great, but they’re still doing their trusts and other investment vehicles on spreadsheets, why can’t they pull all those things into Class as well?”

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