No decision on sale of ATS savings business claims Alliance Trust Director


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After announcing they had received approaches from ‘interested’ parties earlier this year, a decision to has yet to be taken, even though it is looking increasingly likely. Clare Dobie, a Board Director of Alliance Trust, raised the issue of selling the ATS (Alliance trust savings) business, at a lunch organised by the AIC on the…


I hope we get a chance to vote on this because I’ll be voting against selling ATS and i think Alliance trust would be silly to sell it. Especially as users of ATS own so much of the trust.

Also it won’t be fair on all the staff in Dundee.

I find the service fine because I rarely need to speak to anyone at ATS, there’s no need to normally because you can do everything online.


It’s probably a good job that you are not calling them. In frustration a couple of years ago I started logging the number of times that I called at ‘exceptionally busy’ times. After 47 consecutive calls, I gave up, tabled a request for their definition of ‘exceptional’ at one of the roadshows and, unsurprisingly, got no answer.
My experience with ATS has been awful to the point that the only saving grace has been the various compensation payments that I have got over the years. IMHO, neither customer service or the platform are a patch on HL.
…now I have to call them (with the extra fee that involves) to sell a stock that is recognised on their platform but which it does not allow you to sell…


That sounds mental @mickbeaman.

I have a SIPP with ATS and fortunately my experience hasn’t been as bad as that. I sometimes need to call them when I need to trade and it won’t go through online but they usually answer fairly quickly and execute the trade for me.

What annoys me about them if I sell an investment and subsequently the investment I sold pays a dividend they purchase new shares with that dividend leaving me with a £30, £50 or whatever holding. It’s crazy because I have to pay normal transaction costs to sell such a piddly little holding.


The board don’t appear to be thinking of selling if they aquired a bolt on last year. As an investor I could do without the comlication this poses. I’m not sure of the structure of Alliance since I am sure it has changed since I last looked but what ever entity manages the Investment Trust could manage the ATS, leaving the Investment Trust to focus on investing, or have I missed something, because that does seem rather simple! :face_with_raised_eyebrow:


Yep. I had that problem too. We have a stub end holding as a result that is not worth the sales costs. More critically they left a dividend sitting in my dead Father’s account post-probate and didn’t tell us about it for almost a decade, causing my nonagenarian mother considerable distress.


Can you set up something so dividends don’t get automatically invested?