Welcome to our asset management marketing roundup
Asset managers are increasingly looking to embrace digital, offering innovative ways to engage with investors who are looking to trust those that are up to speed. From marketing funds on new look websites and social media accounts, to video marketing and written blogs, we here at Kurtosys scour the web to find the very best industry-specific examples of fund marketing and industry movers and shakers to save you the hard work.
This week’s round up brings huge ETF-related activity, increased cryptocurrency and MiFID II speculation and Hollywood’s shifting portrayals of financial advisors.
Movers & Shakers
Is now ➜ Head of Digital Services at Ledger Bennett
Was: Digital Consultant – Interim at Barclays
Rachelle Le Corre
Is now ➜ International Marketing Manager at Ashburton Investments
Was: Assistant Marketing Manager at Ashburton Investments
Is now ➜ Global Head of Institutional Marketing at Fidelity International
Was: Director of Fund Operations at LCM Partners
Kurtosys expresses their best wishes to all starting in their new positions.
Website Spotlight: PowerShares
Towards the end of last year, Invesco Ltd. announced its acquisition of Source – a leading independent specialist provider of ETFs – in order to expand the investment company’s range of passive and alternative investment capabilities.
There’s a small delving into the background story, with more in this press release, but now we present Invesco PowerShares impressive fund-focused website. It’s a simply designed and tight-fitting package bursting with vast fund information.
The site’s homepage is short and sweet; a rectangular main block links to the ETF provider’s seminal ‘combined product range’, with four additional squares linking to contact pages and other trading information. Still, the design is as eye-catching as it is minimalistic and the site is responsive on the desktop.
Once you reach the product range however, the pure length of the ETF range is awe-inspiring. Whilst this list of products could be fairly overwhelming, the user experience factor of the toggle buttons and drop down lists to segment asset classes, regions and sectors makes this initial shock a lot easier to digest.
The fund information on this main list includes each ETF’s daily-updated changes in NAV, but each fund’s separate page offers an impressive amount of further information. Again, the trading descriptions, index components, downloadable documents and performances are all divided by toggle buttons for ease of access.
A key aspect of our favourite fund sites here at Kurtosys is interactive graphs, which are present on the ETFs’ ‘Performance’ sections – users can adjust date ranges and download the information as an Excel file if they are particularly spreadsheet focused.
We’re impressed with the consistent presentation of each ETF’s information, as well as the number of products on offer after this merger between a traditional investment manager and a specialist ETF provider, all fitting within an attractively designed, mobile friendly site.
Fund(s) in Focus: State Street Tech ETFs
In keeping with an ETF-heavy week here at AMMF, here’s the news of the latest ETF launch from State Street Global Advisors.
By tracking Kensho New Economies indices (capturing companies “propelling the Fourth Industrial Revolution” in such niches as robotics and artificial intelligence across many industries), these ETFs will help investors tactically focus long-term strategies on these technologies with glowing potential, and tap into key market trends and developments.
Hitting the ETF scene with full force, here is the breakdown of the THREE new funds:
SPDR Kensho Intelligent Structures ETF (XKII) – this will seek to track the Kensho Intelligent Infrastructure Index, capturing companies with advanced services and products in the areas of smart building, transportation and water infrastructure and smart power grids.
SPDR Kensho Smart Mobility ETF (XKST) – this will seek to track the Kensho Smart Transportation Index, capturing companies providing products and services in advanced transport systems as well as the emerging technologies including autonomous vehicles and drones for both civilian and commercial use.
SPDR Kensho Future Security ETF (XKFS) – this will seek to track the Kensho Future Security Index, capturing companies providing services and products in cyber and border security, and military application, using technologies including robotics, drones, space tech, wearables and virtual or augmented reality devices.
Given the capturing of many sci-fi reminiscent technologies spells an evermore exciting era for ETF capabilities, courtesy of State Street who, for the past two decades, have been a forerunner in the exchange traded funds space.
Wealth Manager in Focus: BlackRock
From the old to the new, there’s an ongoing exodus of executives ditching traditional firms to join the revolution of nascent technologies within the financial sector, as reported by Financial News.
The world’s largest (and potentially the most widely recognisable) asset manager BlackRock has made the headlines for this very reason, with two “veterans” of the company making a seismic shift to launch a cryptocurrency based hedge fund.
Michael Wong, a senior portfolio manager and head of fixed income asset allocation, and Adam Grimsley, a fixed income specialist, have clearly reacted to the news that six of the world’s biggest AMs were not keen on investing on bitcoin, heading for cryto-pastures new with Nic Niedermowwe, an Oxford PhD. They have launched Prime Factor Capital.
2017 saw a torrent of interest in bitcoin, yet has since experienced a Miltonian fall from grace in the past week, dragging the worthiness of cryptocurrencies down to slightly murkier depths.
Grimsley however remains optimistic in the face of precariousness; high-net worth individuals and some institutional investors are still keen to diversify their portfolios with such funds, and the market is still at an early stage, hoping to spread its wings as more knowledge of crypto-issues (primarily security and safety) get made clearer.
Cryptocurrencies are the most speculative phenomena to hit the financial world, so whilst gaining interest in the asset management world, the sector’s unpredictability also increases.
MiFID II News
Carrying on the devilish metaphors, here’s this analysis from Mike Barrett of the lang cat following “the beast that is MiFID II”.
In fitting with the lang cat consultancy’s usual humourous vibe, “I would have got away with it too if it wasn’t for those meddling KIIDs” expands on the directive’s need for firms to be completely transparent with the costs charged to their funds, featuring Scooby Doo-specific references along the way.
A master blogger as well as an investment professional, Mike Barrett takes a closer look at offending firms and additional costs, something which has always happened, yet now advisers have to be fully upfront when disclosing the fact that investors have to pay both ‘x’ and ‘y’ – zoinks!
I went there. Check out this thorough, and entertaining, analysis particularly relevant in the recent wake of the ghostly MiFID II, still haunting financial players forevermore.
The future for wealth managers
Going even further into analytical territory is this substantial report from consultancy giant EY: ‘Are you supporting tomorrow’s wealth management with yesterday’s technology?’
After surveying clients within the wealth management sector, EY has determined that the majority of these (59%) will use digital as a preferred channel for receiving advice in the next two to three years, as well as looking to service their own customer base using more online tools and smartphone-based functionality as client behaviour changes in the digital landscape.
And the evidence for that? 70% of high net worth clients agree that they would value a wealth manager’s robo-advice. There’s plenty more evidence-based insights here, in this fundamental companion piece for wealth managers everywhere.
Investing in video
We touch on the very best video marketing techniques by asset managers here at AMMF, and this regular investment advice series courtesy of PWL Capital’s Ben Felix – Common Sense Investing – is exemplary in its use straightforward fact recital, research and animated infographics.
For any financial institutions looking to useful present product updates, thought leadership sessions, or general educational material, take note of the example below.
…three popular culture leaning stories in the financial sphere.
Just as Hollywood attempts to regularly document the everyday lives of policeman, wizards, sport stars, giant gorillas (to varying degrees of realism), what can be said for La La Land’s portrayal of the humble financial advisor?
According to this close-to-home article featured in BankInvestmentConsultant, titles such as Netflix’s hit money laundering caper Ozark are more high on the ‘artistic license’ spectrum, whilst true ‘pump and dump’ stories as documented by The Wolf of Wall Street protagonist Jordan Belfort or hedge fund client management jobs of The Big Short do bear some realistic fruit. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson as an ex-NFL player turned advisor? Forget about it.
That being said, Financial Times has interviewed and documented Manchester City and Belgium International Team Captain Vincent Kompany, who has received an MBA after studying part-time for five years at Alliance Manchester Business School. Congratulations Vincent – a true example of a footballer turned aspiring corporate finance academic.
And in a final link, having already covered the similar exploits of NBA star Kevin Durant essentially owning a private equity fund here, he also invests in personal finance app Acorns, which has this week gained the first fintech investment from The Rise Fund, co-founded by U2 singer Bono. The fame of fintech is still steadily rising, if you’ll pardon the pun.
That’s all for this week, but be sure to check back soon for more asset management marketing highlights and fintech snippets from Kurtosys.
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