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D-View: new technologies to assist the funds industry

30/10/2018

Mathieu Maurier, Country Manager for Societe Generale Securities Services in Luxembourg since 1 September 2018, reviews the importance of new technologies in the investment fund industry.

The introduction of digital media and new technologies in the banking industry is having a positive impact on the range of customer services. The agility and innovative ability of players in this sector are currently driving their transformation. Robo-advisors, big data, blockchains, robotic process automation (RPA), artificial intelligence and their numerous applications are now part of everyday life.

The agility and innovative ability of players in this sector are currently driving their transformation.

In recent years, banks have come to understand the value of interacting with this new world, and in particular of collaborating with fintech start-ups. Banks initially saw these new providers as a potential threat to their model, but are now convinced of the importance of forging partnerships with them. The increase in funding for start-ups demonstrates the level of enthusiasm in this area.

To better understand the major changes underway, Societe Generale Securities Services (SGSS) recently conducted a prospective survey of 100 clients based in Europe (traditional and alternative asset managers and institutional investors), called “Taking the Long View”. One particular finding to emerge is that respondents rank topics related to digital media and new technologies very highly. For 84% of them, these questions are key to developing their strategies, while 39% of the asset managers surveyed are committed to making better use of data.

But because they require multiple skills and financial resources, it is impossible for them to support development while remaining isolated. This is the case for all buy-side players as well as securities service providers, which are also deploying platforms enabling them to offer, via application programming interfaces (APIs), access to a wide range of in-house services and services provided by external partners, including fintechs.

The launch, at the end of September, of the #LePlateauLUX innovation laboratory by Societe Generale Luxembourg is an example of this “co-creation”. With the aim of incorporating new technologies into the heart of its businesses, the bank is promoting collaborative work between internal project developers, start-ups and fintech ecosystems in Luxembourg. External start-ups, mainly operating in the artificial intelligence, data, blockchain and cybersecurity sectors, have been selected based on the technologies used, their relevance to the Luxembourg market, and possible applications for this industry.

The benefits of this collaborative effort between start-ups and banks could generate a completely fresh approach to the customer experience, at a time when consumption habits are changing.

Against this backdrop, SGSS is launching D-View, a fund distribution analysis tool for asset managers. This bespoke reporting and analysis solution is an innovative decision-support tool for the distribution strategy of their funds domiciled in different countries.

With D-View, asset managers can access customisable dashboards based on their needs and benefit from a consolidated view of their funds’ distribution data from various domiciles. Providing detailed reporting and analysis of their investors and distributors and the performance of their funds in various markets, the new tool makes it much easier for asset managers to adapt their distribution strategy.

D-View is accessible from the SG Markets online services platform addressing clients of the Global Banking and Investor Solutions (GBIS) entities. It thereby provides asset managers with easy access to a range of information, such as subscriptions and redemptions of funds (which can be compared with assets under management), details of flows by country – by type of investor, type of fund, and ISIN code – a ranking of the top 10 distributors of each fund and access to five-year historical data.

The new solution is based on the SGSS “data lake”, an innovative technology that stores and aggregates information and data collected by transfer agents. D-View now includes data from funds domiciled in Luxembourg, Ireland and Germany and, by 2019, from funds in France, Italy, the United Kingdom and Switzerland. The solution already covers 88% of cross-border fund data.

The provision of this type of tool demonstrates Societe Generale Securities Services’ ability to combine its expertise with the opportunities now offered by new technologies, thus giving its clients greater agility in the construction of their development strategies.

Published by the AGEFI.lu, October 2018 (Translated from French)

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