Standard Life is set to acquire IT supplier Focus Solutions Group for approximately £42 million, in a bid to improve its systems.

The savings and investment firm said the transaction would help it capitalise on opportunities arising within its key corporate and retail markets.

Focus provides software and consultancy services to the financial services industry. Its technology is aimed at automating the delivery of financial products and services across multiple distribution channels.

Standard Life said it would combine Focus Solutions' technology with its own Wrap platform, covering point of sale systems, customer relationship management, tax wrapper technology and investment trading.

The company said Focus Solutions' existing technology strategy will be continued and the brand will be retained.

David Nish, chief executive at the company, said: "Standard Life continues to focus on the delivery of solutions and services for intermediaries and other distribution channels. Consistent with our previous acquisitions of [benefits technology firm] Vebnet and [independent financial adviser services firm] threesixty, the acquisition of Focus provides further capability in providing support, technology and innovation to our core markets and customers."

Meanwhile, Standard Life is attempting to cut £350 million from costs by 2012, aided by a technology and process overhaul. The firm said IT improvements, the automation of processes, and the outsourcing of some of its software development had helped it cut £47 million from costs last year.