As open access to publications continues to gather momentum we should continuously question whether it is moving in the right direction. A new innovation/move/model is the creation of open access publishing platforms commissioned by funding organisations. Examples include those of the Wellcome Trust (https://wellcomeopenresearch.org/
) and Gates Foundation (https://gatesopenresearch.org/
), as well as recently announced initiatives from public funders like the European Commission and Irish Health Research Board. As the move to create such platforms increases, it becomes urgently necessary to assess in which ways, for better or worse, this emergent phenomenon complements or disrupts the scholarly communications landscape. This article aims to examine the ethical, organisational and economic strengths and weaknesses of such platforms, as well as analysing usage and uptake to date, to scope the opportunities and threats presented by this emergent phenomenon in the ongoing transition to open access.