This week’s edition of Kurtosys Spotlight features a firm’s rebrand to Lumyna, Ed Lecky-Thompson, social media in investment decisions, cybersecurity, AI, the World Fintech Report and the results of the #PaymentsRace.

Digital Leader Spotlight: Ed Lecky-Thompson, Global Head of Digital Propositions at Schroders

Ed-Lecky-ThompsonBeing in the ‘digital’ side of things for the past twenty years, Ed Lecky-Thompson is a prominent digital leader for the financial services space, with half of this time being situated in asset and wealth management.

Ed started his financial foray into technological leadership at Charles Stanley & Co. as Global Head of Digital. In his time at the company, Ed helped lead the proposition design and delivery for the award-winning Charles Stanley Direct initiative, a way for users to manage their accounts by digital means, through desktop and a mobile application. Ed has continued to drive digital innovation at financial services companies, moving on to Aberdeen Asset Management and finally Schroders, where he has held the post of Global Head of Digital Strategy and Innovation, and now Global Head of Digital Propositions, focusing on technology platform implementation and the drive for a digital/hybrid wealth management model.

Ed has a clear emphasis on building customer-facing services, and at Schroders has made strategic investments in Benchmark Capital (a technology-led adviser support business) and WeInvest (a Singapore-based fintech provider for wealth and asset managers), looking to build bridges between the traditional firm and disruptive technologies. Ed also acts as a speaker at industry events, including TugLife IV last year, and Horizons: Future of Fund Management 2019.

Ed is part of our Most Influential Digital Leaders in Asset Management gallery, check out the full list here.

Website in Focus: Lumyna Investment Limited


New in the website rollout category here at the Spotlight is the presentation of an offering from Lumyna. If you’re wondering who Lumyna Investments Limited are exactly, it’s the rebranded name for CM Investment Solution Limited (CMISL), acquired by Generali Group at the end of last year from Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML) as reported by Bourse Direct.

And beyond the name change are these new-look digital webpages, found over at It’s available in 35 countries, available to both retail and institutional investors.

The home page is a bright and spacious affair, with some excellent white space used to contrast a smart animated header image, featuring the rebranded name contrasted with splatters of purples, greens and blues for an eye-catching introduction. Once registering through an attestation (a component we see regularly for asset management websites), you can access a well-designed fund centre. Housing the firm’s 112 share classes, there’s a search-ahead function, and the table is expandable to access the detailed information in fund cards (including pricing, past performance etc.). These can also be narrowed down using filter buttons to search by fund type, share class or language, and each have downloadable fund documents, and the ability to add them to a watchlist, to save for later.

This excellent functionality is also displayed in the fund literature section of the site, with similar components decked out in the firm’s navy and white colour scheme.

It’s a wonderful offering with some clear calls to action for investors to surf its expansive range of funds. You can check out more of our favourite asset management websites in our gallery.

Featured Report: Has social media become part of the investment process?


Although we’ve looked into how social media can expose asset managers through faux pas, it can actually be an important ally, too.

Peregrine Communications have provided a list of excellent findings from a recent Greenwich Associates study, looking into investors’ attitudes towards social media in regards to making investment decisions. Entitled ‘Investing in the Digital Age’ – which you can find here – they interviewed 277 institutional investors from North America, Europe and Asia.

There’s plenty of incredible findings, certainly pointing towards the fact that social media channels – with LinkedIn being the favourite – are overtaking traditional forms of communication. Financial-trade publications are seemingly old fashioned; 63% of those surveyed would rather read social media than the <50% that read these types of news outlets.

From a marketing perspective too, it’s interesting to see that 86% of investors state that they take action on content that they receive from investment firms, with 41% doing so weekly at the very least. Clearly, the content management strategies used by firms is clearly working, so far in that utilising social media channels to spread the wealth of information is proving to be key. This certainly negates the idea of social media as obsolete, albeit that certain platforms are better than others. In fact, this report has found that LinkedIn has been ranked the ultimate media sources for distributing market updates, over and above such esteemed publications including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, CNBC, FT or Bloomberg. Impressive!

The page also features some animated infographics on top of the colourful graphs, so it’s well worth checking out to see how investors will want to receive your content, and the specific reasons for why they take to social media in droves to keep abreast of industry updates.

Video in Focus: Security Revisited

Cyber attacks are a devastating phenomenon that could seriously harm a financial institution, and the risk posed by them increases indefinitely as time goes by and techniques used by hackers become more difficult to detect and halt.

In light of this, it’s important for institutions in the investment management industry to reflect on how they can prepare themselves and deepen their security measures. Luckily, the Investment Association is looking to assist its members with these practices.

Over on their LinkedIn channel is a video from Pauline Hawkes-Bunyan, the IA’s Director for Business Risk, Culture and Resilience to discuss what the industry is doing with the threat of future breaches looming ever closer, the opportunities, the challenges and how collaboration is key. Check it out!

Featured Event: Man vs Machine: Considering the Impact of AI in Asset Management

If you’re a marketing leader in the financial services space, the next event in the Financial Services Forum’s Executive Breakfast Series may certainly be of interest to you.

We’ve all been pondering about the practical uses of artificial intelligence in financial services, and it’s a technological advance that seems to be becoming more tangible by the day. Indeed, when it comes to the investment management world, AI’s ability to spot market trends, tailor preferences to clients and predict outcomes is just one way in which robots can take on the might of the human brain and cut out an awful lot of workload. Elsewhere, there’s the debate that our mechanic counterparts can’t be as readily personable as us real people, needing to maintain the human touch for firm-and-client relationships.

It’s this debate that drives the conversation; Man vs Machine: Considering the Impact of AI in Asset Management is the perfect opportunity for finserv leaders to discuss the challenges and priorities for implementing AI. Whether that’s to automate time-consuming, laborious processes, becoming chatbots or to assist in the “Sales-marketing divide”, there’s plenty of practical uses that place robots as the future of asset management. Plus, there’s a complimentary English breakfast – perfect!

The event takes place in the morning of 18 June 2019, starting at 08:00. It will be held at the following address:

Bleeding Heart Restaurant, 3 Bleeding Heart Yard, London, EC1N 8SJ

You can register for the event at the FS Forum website, get booking!

Fintech News: World Fintech Report 2019


It’s that time of year again, the midway point of 2019 sees a flurry of reports to see exactly where we’re at as the second half gets underway. Just as with the social media report we saw earlier, the discussion looks to technology, with the 2019 edition of the annual World Fintech Report, courtesy of Capgemini and Efma. You can download the full report over at this landing page.

Nicely abbreviated to WFTR 2019, this worldwide survey gathered responses from 116 ‘traditional’ financial services firms and around 40 fintechs which represent industries including banking, payments and transfers and investment management. The aim, by surveying two vastly different sources, was to see how the ecosystem has changed, given that technology providers and legacy banks are now working in tandem, or competing with each other.

One of the biggest talking points in the digitalisation of finance in the past few years has been Open Banking – the idea of open APIs allowing third-party developers to build application and services, and giving greater transparency for account holders in regards to the use of their data. However, this report actually lends half of its weighty contents to the idea of Open Banking already being an outdated notion; step forward ‘Open X’. This is one step further, a shared marketplace where all players use data collaboratively to provide customers the best service. It looks to seamlessly integrate with the overall customer journey.

The report hinges on the idea that fintech’s main provision to the financial world is its stress on customer satisfaction, forcing traditional firms to change how they view their customers’ expectations and act on them. It also looks into real-use cases of how financial firms and tech companies are actively participating in API standardisation, the role of entrant banks such as Starling, and how prepared companies believe they are in the process of open banking (shock: banks fall well behind their fintech friends).

Plenty to digest in this action-packed document, but it provides plenty to mull over for the rest of the year, and before the release of the 2020 edition.

Social Spotlight: Double Trouble

A couple of things that caught our gaze over on Twitter this week…

…the first being this obscure marketing tactic from Santander, who have enlisted 90s throwbacks and I’m a Celeb hosts Ant and Dec to become the faces for ‘Bank of Ant and Dec’, a slipshod new bank to rival Santander’s service. Take a look at the advertisement here:

Elsewhere, the epic #PaymentsRace that has been going on for the past few weeks has finally come to an end (sigh). What a glorious 12 days, and the winner iiiiiiiis…

…that’s correct. Crypto trumps card, cash and mobile to show that, indeed, Bitcoin and other digital assets are not as elusive as many may believe. If Alex can negotiate his way around the globe with only a phone and some crypto-tokens, the future looks brighter still for this form of payment. You can’t argue much with that.

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Elliot Burr

Content Marketing Editor at Kurtosys
Fervently chatting about the future of funds and fintech.