Wealthsimple is leaving the UK

The investment Robo-adviser Wealthsimple will be leaving the UK to further focus on its Canadian business.
3 min read

In 2017, Wealthsimple entered the UK market. It began offering General Investment Accounts, ISA’s (Individual Savings Account) and JISA’s (Junior Individual Savings Account), the offering from Wealthsimple required no minimum investment and fees started from 0.7%.

Earlier this year Wealthsimple decided to leave the United States and the company sold its investment advisory business to Betterment. At the time Micheal Katchen, CEO of Wealthsimple said:

“As we shift our focus to our Canadian business for the time being, finding a partner for our US business that shared our commitment to putting clients first was our top priority.”

Now Wealthsimple has confirmed they are also pulling out of the UK. On Wealthsimple’s website the company has said the following:

“This decision was a result of a shift in focus to our Canadian business for the time being. We have valued you as a client over the years and enjoyed being your trusted investment advisor.”

It would appear the reason for leaving the UK is the same as for leaving the US, that Wealthsimple would like to shift its focus to its Canadian business, which was where Wealthsimple began. The Canadian offering from Wealthsimple has always been ahead of what was offered in the UK, since the company launched in the UK not much changed around the offering from Wealthsimple (apart from the addition of a Pension offering). Whereas in Canada the company offers many more products and services, such as:

  • Invest (like in the UK)
  • Cash
  • Trade
  • Crypto
  • Tax

Currently Wealthsimple has over 1.5 million customers globally and over $10 billion in customer funds on its platform. It is unknown how many of those customers are based in the UK.

Last year Wealthsimple appointed a new UK CEO after Toby Triebel stepped down. Caroline Murphree was his replacement, she was to lead the company’s strategy and operations for both the UK and European business. At the time of her appointment she said:

“I look forward to leading the company as we remain focused on building out our core investment product and growing our business-to-business offering in the UK and Europe.”

However, since then it seems that the company has had an overall change of direction to focus on its Canadian business, leading to the pull out of the UK and US markets.

What this means for Wealthsimple UK customers

Any existing Wealthsimple customers with funded accounts will be transferred over to Moneyfarm. Wealthsimple has said that fees will not increase, customers will pay the lowest of either the current Wealthsimple fee or Moneyfarm’s fee and any promotions customers currently have such as a fee-free period will be honoured by Moneyfarm. All accounts will automatically move to Moneyfarm on the 28th of January 2022. Existing Wealthsimple customers will have received an email with more information.

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