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Is 2021 the year of digitalisation for asset managers?

How do we move to the ideal state and is 2021 the year of digitalisation for asset managers? Our CEO, Rachel Strevens, was recently invited to be part of a panel discussion at the virtual Connect Forum 2020 digital event. Hosted by Calastone, the event brought together world-class speakers from across the industry to share insights into how the sector can continue to innovate and build the investment landscape of the future.

The panel kicked off with a discussion around how Covid-19 had impacted each of the panellists own business models. From Invsta’s perspective, our ingrained fintech model enabled us to remain flexible and mobile during this period. For incumbents, it was more of a challenge to adapt. Rapid awareness of digital processes became the focal point for many financial service providers during the pandemic, with many rapidly adopting technology to stay relevant. There’s been a strong emphasis on digitalisation enhancing and streamlining processes throughout the value chain. 

Another key discussion point was how best to capture and service tomorrows investors. Justin Howell, Chief Operating Officer from the Pendal Group, indicated that fund managers must use technology to reduce friction in time and processes and identify how they can be more effective in distributing their services. The digital avenue provides an opportunity for fund managers to scale their services to an online audience without increasing costly overheads. 

The threat of Bigtech encroachment is very real. Danielle Gerace, Senior Vice President and Head of Market Advocacy and Innovation Research, APAC for the Northern Trust Corporation, highlighted how Bigtech giants have created an institutional and retail expectation on what the customer experience looks like. Our report, Is your business ready 2020+, provides useful tactics for providers to combat the threat of these Bigtech giants. Visualisation tools and contextual information will appeal to modern investors, who are looking for transparency and actionable insights around their investment data.

So what does the future look like? Real-time portfolio creation and overall convenience will be facilitated by open banking, real-time data and APIs. The panellists agree that the utopian state will be a borderless future for lifecycles, asset classes and client service models. However, the regulators still have a long way to go in terms of getting on board.

See the full recording of the Connect Forum 2020 panel discussion here: https://events.streamgo.co.uk/Calastone-Connect-Forum-Online-2020/events/10 

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