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Profile Software eNewsletter Autumn 2013

Peer-to-Peer lending: is it the next step in the lending business?

Crowd-funding schemes seem to be growing

Peer-to-Peer (P2P) lending is a concept that flourished on the turn of the recent financial crisis. As banks tightened their loans' processes, crowd-funding schemes such as P2P lending enabled SMEs and individuals to receive funding without approaching a bank. Given the latest trends, especially in the US and the UK, P2P lending seems to be gaining ground over traditional lending and in some cases even with the support of the government.

Latest research suggests that peer-to-peer investments can generate strong returns over a certain period as they secure the capital against market fluctuations. On a recent survey in the UK, almost a third of the respondents would be in favour of such schemes, especially when the market is planned to be strictly regulated in a couple of years. The challenge in this sector would be the type of regulations deployed as they might affect the popularity of the P2P practice. Online lending platforms also expect to increase in popularity as they provide fast and easy way to match borrowers and lenders, offering great returns. The fact remains that banks have the greatest experience in the lending field and they could work in collaboration with large P2P lenders as they spawn off over the next years to set the rules for better business models. These models would be beneficial to all parties involved. At this moment the opinions about the specifics of P2P lending vary and more research would need to be done in the sector, especially from the state, in each country.  

The rise of P2P lending however seems unquestionable. It is likely to have a significant effect on the industry in the long run so it is a question for the existing financial institutions, how well prepared they are to work with this challenge ahead. Profile Software’s FMS.next P2P Lending solution is the latest addition to the FMS.next Universal Banking suite, aiming at meeting the requirements of P2P lenders for the retail and SME sector. The solution’s core engine is a blend of investment management and banking modules, reflecting Profile Software’s proven experience in both domains.

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The changing landscape in the wealth management industry

Can technology contribute to Swiss, Singapore and the UAE’s investment firms’ competitiveness?

Research material suggests that putting customers’ interest first, having greater transparency and providing new offerings are what modern wealth management service providers need in order to remain competitive. As country regulations (UK, Switzerland, etc) increase and new specialized players are joining the market, traditional wealth management firms need to restructure their operations to achieve a better cost-income ratio.

Research findings by well-known consultancy firms such as Deloitte (1) and Gapgemini (2) indicate that the “international wealth management industry is undergoing unprecedented changes and the drivers of change, among others, include the legal and regulatory framework, the shift in client demands and the increasing dynamics in the competitor landscape”. Switzerland is still the top-ranked financial center, however Singapore and Hong Kong are approaching fast. Switzerland has exceptional ranking in human capital and service, however other countries provide financial stability and a beneficial tax regime. Technology driven firms can experience competitiveness in performance since digital/mobility, reporting and process automation along with regulatory-driven investments could leverage to extract more value.

Utilizing the technology tools available, wealth management service providers can witness significant increase on client satisfaction and onboarding, improved operations (income-cost ratio) and easy compliance. The aforementioned elements lead to a more relaxed mind-set for client-facing staff allowing them to spend more time on customer needs rather than researching and preparing reports or analysis.

IMSplus, being Profile Software’s flagship platform for investment management has been enriched to accommodate the latest market trends and country regulations, incorporating a comprehensive private wealth management solution. Among its latest enhancements are the following:

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GS Market Suite with new add-ons

GS Market Suite, Profile Software's complete platform for the modern trader and investor, is the development of Monopoly, the company's market data feed platform. It has now been enriched with the GS Mobility application to offer the much needed flexibility on-the-go.  

GS Mobility’s open architecture provides back office connection to any system for accessing valuable information to any private investor or Relationship Manager. This information can vary from portfolio and cash position analysis, to links and market price feeds from any source (supplying RT prices), along with the ability to immediately place orders, while performing all necessary compliance control checks, before and after an order’s placement. 

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Conclusions and findings from the London event

Profile Software presents a brief summary of the wealth management industry trends as discussed by its executives and Ian Woodhouse, PwC, during the thought–provoking event, organised by the company, in London.

Ian Woodhouse developed his presentation around the topic of “Wealth management industry challenges – opportunities and trends”.  During this, he outlined the future trends for the sector, such as the evolving customer requirements, the changes in regulations and the increased need for transparency. All these mark an inflection point for the industry, where professionals and organisations are called upon to proactively adapt in order to succeed.

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IMSplus Mobility on the Google Play Store™ - download now!

Profile Software, by adding and enhancing the functionality of its leading investment management system, IMSplus, has developed IMSplus Mobility to help investment firms and their clients to have a complete and secure access to their portfolios and transactions with full reporting and add-on functionality via their mobile devices (smartphones or tablets). 

The features of IMSplus Mobility are constantly evolving to fully accommodate the latest trends and market developments. Download to witness its elegant design and powerful functionality using the Google Play Store™ (also available on the App StoreSM ).

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Awards for Profile Software!

Profile Software has been named the “Best Investment Banking Systems Provider - Western Europe” in the 2013 World Finance Technology Awards. Since 2007, World Finance has been celebrating achievement, innovation and brilliance in their annual awards. These industry honours are given on the basis of voter participation and based on achievements and best practice in the field.

Furthermore, Profile Software has received distinctions for its accomplishments over the past year,  such as with the “Best Product Specialist Award”  by Goodacre in London and has been selected as a National Champion in the category of “Customer focus” in the prestigious European Business Awards 2013/14 programme while it is a candidate for the British Swiss Business Awards this year.

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Harvard Business Review News

Profile Software in association with the Harvard Business Review, keeps you updated with news, articles and management tips from one of the most prestigious publications worldwide. Enjoy below the most popular management tips;

Seven Types of Sales Managers
by Steve W. Martin  
Over the past decade, I've worked closely with hundreds of vice presidents of sales, and like all of people, each has a unique personality. Some are gregarious. Some are assertive. Some are action-oriented. But even as I observe their individual differences, I have recognized patterns of behavior, which have allowed me to catalog their styles of sales management. 

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References: (1) Deloitte, Wealth Management Centre Ranking 2013 (2) Gapgemini and RBC, World Wealth Report 2013,