FNZ has signed a strategic partnership agreement with the UK’s central securities depository, Euroclear UK & Ireland (EUI).

Under the agreement, FNZ will integrate its fund settlement process with EUI to improve clearing counterparty protection for its customers and lower operating risk through improved end-to-end automation of the settlement process for managed funds.

In the UK, FNZ powers the wealth platforms for a significant portion of the market including Standard Life, AXA, Zurich, Friends Life, Close Brothers, JPMorgan Asset Management and HSBC.

Christopher James, managing director, Wealth Services at FNZ, said: "This agreement transitions the UK fund market, in which FNZ is the leading provider of fund transaction and custody services in the platform sector, to the delivery-versus-payment model that has existed for many years in the North American fund market and for equities in the UK market. Our decision to house unit settlement and cash reconciliation with Euroclear significantly enhances the security and automation of the end-to-end process for our customers which are the leading UK platform providers."

Katrina Sartorius, director and head of Product Management for Euroclear UK & Ireland, said: "We are delighted to partner with FNZ, a leading provider of cutting edge transaction and custody services to the institutional funds and wealth platform sectors. We are committed to supporting their current and future growth by ensuring that FNZ and their clients benefit from the efficiencies and risk reductions that can only be achieved through scale, and end-to-end automation of cash and share settlement."

FNZ joins twelve of the UK’s largest fund managers, including M&G, Invesco, Schroders and Hendersons, in selecting Euroclear UK & Ireland as their investment fund service provider. By the end of the first quarter of 2014 over 50% of orders routed through EUI’s order router will be available for settlement via the CSD’s investment funds service.

Fund orders from institutional firms and IFAs can be routed using technology providers, such as FNZ, to Euroclear UK & Ireland’s order routing and settlement service, which interfaces electronically with transfer agents and the fund managers they service.