iPlus, the core of the integrated solution, manages the creation of active content and the definition of business rules and contextualisation within an N-Dimensional data model. iPlus is integrated with three supporting products:
Library, both a mobile application to support your sales teams with marketing support documents and a centralised distribution engine to automate the compliant delivery of those documents wherever they are needed. Documents created outside of iPlus can be readily loaded into Library.
Readi, both an active content repository and a centralised distribution engine to automate the compliant delivery of your active content to wherever it is needed.
Forte, a portal into your content repository. Delivering your web and mobile fund centre and an interactive intranet tool to model your product information.
iPlus is the cornerstone for companies serious about building a digital strategy which will work today, tomorrow and long into the future. iPlus is currently used by some of the largest global banks and investment management companies.
iPlus puts you firmly in control of your product information - enabling it to be broadcast efficiently through current and future channels and to support current and future sales enablement. Your product information comes alive as it is refreshed with the latest approved jurisdiction compliant and context aware content.
The bonus is that in addition to extending our service to our sales team, fund managers, consultants and customers, we have also saved ourselves a great deal of money.Mark Smith, Managing Director - Investment Information Service, BNY Mellon Investment Management EMEA
iPlus controls the transformation of data into information, resulting in a Golden Copy of your product information and market ready performance data. Refreshed and ready on each reporting cycle to provide a coherent, consistent and controlled source to be used and repurposed as required.
Improve control over your publishing and data processes and gain greater functionality from your data, lower operating costs, increase levels of transparency and compliance and deliver fast and reliable information to your customers.
iPlus output is accurate and reliable, aware of jurisdiction and audience no matter how or where the information is used. And it is all beautifully rendered in design studio quality according to your brand style guidelines.
integrate is a pioneer in the world of database multimedia publishing. Our aim is simple; to help clients transform their data into informative and engaging communications in the most efficient way possible. Since our inception in 1996, integrate has provided innovative solutions to a wide range of market leading companies throughout Europe and America.
We bring you a series of blog posts, whitepapers and case studies by our team:
Graham Duncan, CEO and Founder of integrate, has significant practical experience in providing successful integrated digital solutions to the Asset Management industry, from the world's first online portfolio valuation portal for Killik & Co, in the 1990's, through to the current global deployments of iPlus 3.
Dr Peter Ellis brings a deep understanding of the Asset Management industry. Managing Director at Deutsche Asset Management and, subsequently, Investit. Chief Operating Officer and Strategic Advisor to BISAM. Peter brings a remarkable depth of knowledge to the integrate team.
Please enter your contact details if you wish to be kept up to date with new blog posts as they are released, or to obtain access to the Whitepaper: "The Digital Transformation of Asset Management: Challenges and Solutions".
Digital technology in asset management:
Innovation in client communications:
When did you first hear the term disruptive technology? I am pretty sure that for most of you it was within the past five years. The term is actually over 20 years old; it was first used in an article published in the Harvard Business Review in February 1995. When terms like disruptive technology enter popular usage, there is a tendency for them to be applied liberally and, as a result, excessively. These days, if you want to make something sound innovative and exciting then just attach the label ‘disruptive technology’ to it, even if it isn’t actually disrupting anything.
This is what I think is happening with the adoption of digital technology in asset management; we’ve attached the disruptive tag to it but it isn’t actually disrupting anything, or at least not much and not yet.1
Disruption needs more than new technology
Disruptive technology isn’t new technology that allows us to do things better, faster, and cheaper than we did them before; that’s just new technology. Disruptive technology is new technology that changes behaviours, that re-invents customer needs and re-calibrates customer expectations, and so creates new markets and value networks.
Can we say that digital technology has done any of these things in the asset management industry? We could point to some areas, but it would all be on a very small scale in the context of the global asset management industry. When you compare the impact that digital technology has had in asset management with the impact it has had in other areas such as the retail and leisure industries, you have to say that it hasn't changed much so far.
And this should concern us, because a lot of asset management organisations are investing a lot of money introducing digital technology into their operating models. I question how much of that money is being spent wisely; and I question how much of that money will deliver the outcome that any form of business investment should deliver: more profit.
Disruption needs more than a bandwagon
In asset management we have a track record of thinking that we are leveraging advances in technology to future proof our operating models when what we are actually doing is spending a lot of money to join a bandwagon heading down a cul-de-sac. Recent examples of this include the dash to implement IBOR projects and the noise around Big Data initiatives.
Saying that something is happening, even if you say it loudly and say it often and say it with lots of conviction, doesn’t mean that it is actually happening. We live in a post-truth age and in a world of alternative facts and fake news. Take a good long objective look at how digital technology is being applied in asset management, and then tell me how it is truly disrupting the industry.
I would agree that digital technology has disrupted some areas of the financial services industry. And I would also agree that it has made inroads into asset management, viz. the introduction of robo-advisers. But when you look at the global asset management industry as a whole it is difficult to objectively conclude that it has been disrupted by digital technology. More importantly, when I look at what mainstream asset management organisations are doing in their haste to 'go digital' it looks a lot like they are joining a bandwagon rather than future proofing their operating models.
Disruption needs more than disruptive technology
Clayton Christensen was the first person to use the term disruptive technology back in 1995. In 2003 he and Michael Raynor wrote a book called The Innovator’s Solution. In this book the authors replaced disruptive technology with disruptive innovation because they had realised that technology alone does not disrupt; disruption occurs when new technology enables the introduction of new business models with disruptive power.
About 10-15 years ago, asset management companies first started making client reports available to their institutional clients as PDFs via static portals. Many investment management firms told their clients that as they could now access reports via the manager’s client reporting portal, they would no longer print and post paper copies of the reports. However, their clients refused to accept this and firms continue to print and post paper copies of client reports to this day. The problem was that there was insufficient differentiation between the old and the new reporting models, and there was insufficient added value in the proposed move to ‘paperless’ reporting. In fact, it was a regressive step from the clients’ perspective because they had to do more to get the same service at the same price.
Introducing new technology without introducing new business models will not change behaviours, or re-invent customer needs, or recalibrate customer expectations. It will not disrupt.
While I challenge the claim that digital technology is disrupting the asset management industry, I don’t disagree with the claim that it could be disruptive. In fact, I would go so far as to say that it should be disrupting the industry. My point is that asset management organisations need to do more than just introduce digital technology, they need to leverage it to re-invent parts of their business models.
Digital disruption in asset management
In the next post in this series I will draw comparisons between how digital technology has been applied in asset management with how it has been applied in other industry sectors. In subsequent posts we will look at why asset management presents more of a challenge than other sectors and at some examples of how digital technology could/should be disruptive in asset management.
In the final post in this series we will argue that what the industry needs is a maturity model for digital technology in asset management.
1 Just to be clear, what I mean by digital technology is: technology for delivering all forms of information (text, pictures, audio, video, etc.) via email, websites, apps and social media.
integrate's iPlus solution is the cornerstone for organisations serious about building a digital strategy that will work today, tomorrow and long into the future. Read this success story to learn how a global asset manager enhanced sales productivity, transitioned distribution to digital channels and reduced operating costs.
integrate (Integrated Publishing Solutions Ltd.) was established in 1996, from roots in providing multi-channel publishing: allowing companies to produce interactive CD-ROMs, websites and print-ready output from the same database, The Golden Copy.
We can reasonably claim to be pioneers in database multimedia publishing and Java application development, with such milestones as the world's first multimedia encyclopedia, The Hutchinson Multimedia Encyclopaedia and our development of the UK's first large scale Java application, a product called Datascape, for Dow Jones Telerate. This was a trading platform which provided a Java implementation of TradeStation.
In the late 1990's we created and launched the Interactive Communication Engine (ICE), a platform to enable rich interaction between Java enabled devices. A series of applications were developed from this core platform, including an innovative interactive CRM application, called HyPhone, which was initially launched by Telenor, a leading Scandinavian Telco.
Our focus has been to provide solutions to enable effective multi channel customer communications whilst maintaining coherence and consistency of both information and brand projection across these multiple channels.
integrate's integrated publishing solutions have invariably brought our customers the ability to create highly finished publications and reports, which appear to have been designed manually, automatically. This has streamlined the production of any customer communications which are based on information stored electronically and which must be attractive and well presented. This information can then be distributed to digital channels, PDF or in traditional print.
iPlus is the direct result of several years of focused application development by a highly skilled team of computer scientists. It is also the indirect result of our longstanding experience in database publishing.
Integrated Publishing Solutions Ltd. is a privately owned company with all equity held by those who work for the company.
When we met them they came across as very convincing that they could do the job. I looked them in the eye and I trusted them to deliver - which they did. They are very professional and I can't recommend them highly enough.Mark Smith, Managing Director - Investment Information Service, BNY Mellon Investment Management EMEA