Across Europe, the rise of the External Asset Manager (EAM) – otherwise known as Financial Intermediary Managers (FIMs) – is a trend that couples huge potential gains with added complexity for banks’ and wealth management firms’ Client Lifecycle Management (CLM).
So how can firms maximise their appeal to this growing workforce? And what’s driving growth in this area?
The first EAM companies were founded in Switzerland in the early ’80s and by 2018, Advent estimated ‘some 3,000 EAMs in Switzerland’ were ‘managing as much as CHF300 billion (US$302 billion) in private client assets.’ It’s a phenomenon fuelled by both sides. Experienced former bankers are attracted by the rewards and the independence of working for themselves, while the banks win too – by buying in the expertise and an established client base of HNWIs – a bridge to increased revenues and reduced costs.
It’s a scenario in which banks can deliver more choices as to who manages their client’s money for the best return. Indeed, the EAM is hyper-agile and flexible – able to propose the best of breed solutions for their clients and offer a more strategic, independent viewpoint. For instance, they could pick up the structured products offering from a bank that is well-known for its expertise on it, and portfolio management with another bank. For all of these reasons, freelance banking is a growing sector, with an estimated 5 to 35% of Swiss banks’ revenue derived from this sales channel.
In exchange for their expertise and agility, the EAM is seeking tools to reduce the administrative burden and enable automated fee calculation, digital onboarding, and event-driven reviews.
Even aside from this trend, the wealth management landscape is growing more complex, with diversifying asset classes including cryptocurrency services being offered by even some of the most long-standing Swiss banks. Add to this, greater client expectations and more touchpoints and channels for communication, and Client Lifecycle Management is under mounting pressure to deliver across a multitude of channels.
Many European firms, therefore, find themselves hampered by a technological infrastructure that’s no longer 100% fit for purpose. In any situation, the efficiency, engagement and productivity of the relationship manager and advisor are impacted by the technology at their disposal, yet in the case of the EAM, there’s an added risk for the bank: they can take their business where the infrastructure supports them. Dissatisfaction leads to attrition – and not just of a client’s wealth – but of a whole book. This too can become an accelerator of client turnover as clients go where the technology wholly supports choice and a personal, intuitive style of service.
In the absence of an effective, integrated CLM solution, banks may have multiple, complex systems to navigate. This means, given access to their back-office, the EAM potentially has to be an expert in them all – from Core Banking Systems to CRM and Portfolio Management Systems. Each bank’s internal policies will likely determine how much access they can have – from the right to change a client’s personal data to the facilitation of transactions or wire transfers beneath a certain limit. All of this is extremely cumbersome to set up from a systems perspective.
So how can banks tap into the talent and network of EAMs without exposing themselves to added security or compliance risks, needing to navigate a complex IT set-up surrounding access rights or risking the loss of whole swathes of their book?
The solution lies in providing a single platform with a portal that allows the EAM access and full view of the client without compromising the client’s data or journey.
Such systems have the propensity to ensure EAMs become a natural extension of the bank, able to fully service their customers, feel in control and remain aligned to their client’s preferences and investment choices. As more of this technology is deployed, it’s likely to rank on any EAM’s wish list when seeking fertile new ground. Not least when you consider the alternative – a fragmented view of the client, obscured by multiple siloed systems and historical data, plus hours spent form filling, obtaining manual signatures, tracking progress and fulfilling compliance.
Wealth Dynamix offer such a solution; our platform manages the complexity of the client lifecycle beneath its interface to offer an exceptional UX that’s accessible to front, middle and back-office team members, or a designated third-party intermediary.
Facilitating workflows, supporting a 360-degree view of the client and ensuring client preferences and data are utilised throughout the client journey end to end, this technology is a game-changer for internal and external wealth managers alike, giving them more time to focus on revenue-generating activity and greater insight to target their actions.
EAMs would also appreciate a solution with the ability to manage multiple custodians and move them from one custodian to another. On the other side, each custodian will keep EAMs if they provide them with a platform allowing them to perform operations as if they were an employee of the custodian.
Cédric Neuville, Director of Pre-sales and Consulting Europe, commented, “We’re seeing more awareness from European banks in terms of the diversification of the wealth management environment and the need to adapt systems to give private bankers and EAMs the tools they need. Firms still relying on a patchwork of systems and manual processes will struggle to attract the top talent and stay competitive. It’s a trend to be mindful of when looking at upgrading your CRM or CLM.”
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An accomplished, results-driven sales and marketing professional, Gabriel has held sales and marketing leadership positions in Singapore and China at some of the world’s most successful and respected global technology enterprises.
During more than 20 years spent at IBM, Sun Microsystems and Microsoft, Gabriel developed and implemented sales and channel strategies to support strategic business objectives.
His specialism is growing and extending sales territories to grow revenues and increase market share.
Travis combines 15 years of software delivery, business modelling and leadership experience with a passion for transforming business needs into effective digital solutions. Before joining Wealth Dynamix in March 2018, Travis led Operations for Nikon – a role which incorporated CRM product ownership responsibility and initiated over 10 years of MS Dynamics experience, from 2011 to Dynamics 365.
Since joining the Wealth Dynamix team, Travis has been instrumental in designing and delivering some of our most strategic WDX1 projects. Leading the consulting team for WDX1, he is responsible for their recruitment and development. The team’s complex remit supports a fundamental aim – to ensure Wealth Dynamix delivers the best client experience. Travis is also responsible for ensuring the WDX1 product is designed and evolved in the most adaptable way possible to drive adoption across our client base, existing and future.
An experienced, tenacious marketer, Jo joined the Wealth Dynamix team in 2021 as Head of Marketing and quickly rose to the position of Chief Marketing Officer. A Brand and Marketing specialist with a proven track record in BRB and B2C communications, Jo combines a customer-centred approach with strategic thinking.
Having held senior Marketing positions in numerous FTSE 100 businesses, including Asda Stores Ltd, The Co-operative Retail Group, plus financial services brands MBNA, OneFamily, TransUnion, The Co-operative Group, she possesses a wealth of experience in the fields of finance and technology.
Jo is passionate about activating the Wealth Dynamix brand across every channel, taking a holistic marketing approach to drive consistency, salience and thought-leadership activity.
Agustin joined Wealth Dynamix over six years ago bringing a wealth of experience in change management.
Having experienced first-hand the challenges of managing clients through change, Agu now brings that expertise to Wealth Management firms looking to leverage technology in order to help them connect more effectively with their clients.
Agu has a deep technical knowledge of our solutions that allows him to deliver our products effectively, unlocking the full potential of every feature.
As our Head of Strategic Client Relationships, Agu’s specialist expertise supports firms to become more efficient, transparent and dependable using our CLM solutions.
Juan has over 20 years’ experience developing and implementing CRM solutions and has spent the last 10 focusing primarily on the Client Lifecycle Management (CLM) in the Wealth Management industry.
Currently Head of Development, Juan is responsible on overseeing the technical direction of the product.
Before joining Wealth Dynamix, Juan has worked for Barclays, Fujitsu and Ciber delivering large scale CRM projects in the financial services industry.
Juan has a first degree in Telecommunication Engineering from Universidad Blas Pascal and a MSc in Business Information Technology from London South Bank University.
An internationally experienced change management professional, Ben is responsible for overseeing projects both internally, and for clients.
In a career spanning more than 20 years in global banking, finance and management consulting, Ben has led strategy formulation, project planning, change management adoption, business networking consultation and transformational change projects at Fortis Investments, Barclays Wealth and Investment Management and Verisure Securitas Direct. Since beginning his career at Deloitte, Ben has also amassed a wealth of experience working on complex CRM system implementations, and is a PROSCI-certified Change Practitioner and a Certified Scrum Master (Scrum Alliance).
When David joined Wealth Dynamix in 2015 he brought with him a vast amount of experience delivering large-scale Microsoft Dynamics CRM projects. As a Senior Business Analyst at Royal Bank of Scotland David managed deployments with more than 2000 users, for both Business and Commercial Banking, as well as working on key AML initiatives for RBS International. In his current role at Wealth Dynamix David supports the growth and strategic direction of client implementations in Europe. Wealth Dynamix leverages David’s product expertise to shape the product roadmap and ensure that the firm delivers solutions with the right capabilities, that will be enthusiastically adopted, by all customers.
Prior to his involvement in the wealth management sector, David worked as a waste management contracts manager, working with Multi Services Kent to ensure effective waste clearance and re-use at the 2012 London Olympics.
Since joining Wealth Dynamix in 2019, Cédric has worked closely with clients to ensure that the WDX and CLMi solutions are deployed efficiently and effectively.
In a career spanning more than 25 years, Cédric has become an accomplished business and global project management leader covering both technology and financial markets sectors. Having held various roles in private banking (front, middle and back office) and brokerages, in both functional and technical roles, Cédric has led many projects including client onboarding implementations and KYC reviews, regulatory compliance projects (including PSD2, MIFID2/PRIIPS, GDPR, CRS, Rubik) and digital transformation projects (online and mobile design and implementation).
Cédric has vast experience building and managing international project teams, having created three offshore teams in Tunisia and India, managed a 70-employee company as Deputy CEO and a startup Fintech founded to create smartphone apps.
As Director of Pre-Sales, Johnny is responsible for maintaining the firm’s pre-sales policies, methodologies and resourcing. He is also leads some of WDX’s largest pre-sales analysis exercises, conducted for a wider variety of financial services firms spanning multiple jurisdictions.
Continual engagement with existing and prospective clients helps to inform the WDX1 product strategy, roadmap and pricing.
Johnny has spent his whole career in financial technology in various consultancy and
pre-sales roles. His expertise covers the full stack of systems required by leading Private Banks and Wealth Managers, encompassing core banking solutions, portfolio management solutions, Client Lifecycle Management (CLM) solutions and more.
William’s commercial expertise in connecting technology to solve wealth management business challenges was borne out of his early career as a stockbroker, followed by a variety of Client Relationship Management and Sales roles in asset management and banking.
Having experienced first-hand the challenges of doing the job, William recognises that an unwavering focus on client service is required to build progressive and mutually beneficial partnerships in FOR the longer term. Having gained further experience working for financial technology service providers including Calastone and Contemi, he has the specialist expertise needed to identify how to leverage technology to help wealth managers connect more effectively with their clients, and become more efficient, transparent and dependable.
In addition to his role as Commercial Director at Wealth Dynamix, responsible for new business development in the UK, US and Middle East, William sits on the board of the Securities Investment Management Association (SIMA) where he is actively involved in exploring industry trends and challenges.
An experienced and accomplished specialist in CRM technology and wealth management, Dominic is responsible for defining and leading the product roadmap for Client Lifecycle Management (CLM) solutions at Wealth Dynamix. Experienced in SaaS strategy definition, Dominic formulated the development and launch plan for the firm’s cloud-based CLMi solution.
Prior to joining Wealth Dynamix in 2014, Dominic held senior positions in both RBS and Barclays Wealth and Investment Management, where he was responsible for leading enterprise-scale CRM implementation projects.
With more than 15 years wealth management and WealthTech experience he has vast expertise and insights into best practice CRM and CLM execution.
François joined Wealth Dynamix in 2020 to grow the company’s presence in France and further extend business operations across Europe and has since been designated Chief Revenue Officer, a member of the board.
Having closed several flagship deals for the company across Europe and Switzerland, today his role encompasses responsibility for new and existing revenues, recruiting, structuring and managing the sales team, plus owning the business forecast and reseller channels.
Previously, François served as Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Executive Committee member and investor at DreamQuark, an Artificial Intelligence software startup. At DreamQuark, he secured the firm’s first recurring revenues with Tier-1 banks and insurance companies, won the Fintech of the Year award and enabled A and B level fundraising. Before that François spent almost 10 years at Nokia Networks, leading European Sales for Analytics Software.
François has an MBA awarded by INSEAD and an engineering degree from the École Centrale de Nantes.
Currently Chief Operating Officer and Board Member at Wealth Dynamix, Natalie is responsible for the strategic direction of operations across the business. A wealth and investment management industry expert, with more than 25 years experience delivering large-scale technology projects, Natalie plays a pivotal role in ensuring the efficient running of the firm and meeting key business goals.
Prior to joining Wealth Dynamix in 2019, Natalie was Head of Technology at Bridgepoint Advisers, a UK-based private equity investment firm. She joined Bridgepoint following an 18-year tenure at Quilter Cheviot, where she was Head of Technology responsible for Operations and execution of the firm’s business plan.
A wealth and investment management industry expert, Brent has more than 25 years of experience in developing front to back software solutions that address sector-specific operational and compliance challenges.
Prior to co-founding Wealth Dynamix in 2012, he was a Director at Third Financial Software, where he drove product development.
Previously, he led business development and product strategy for the wealth management division of Financial Objects.
Brent spent 13 years at DST (now SS&C) until 2007, where he was Associate Director responsible for the global product strategy of institutional front office and wealth management solutions.
He graduated from Downing College, Cambridge, with an honours degree in Geography.
With a lifetime career in wealth management, beginning in front office sales more than 25 years ago, Gary is recognised as a highly successful, award-winning executive and serial entrepreneur.
Currently CEO at Wealth Dynamix, one of Europe’s fastest growing WealthTech firms which he founded in 2012, Gary has pioneered a new approach to Client Lifecycle Management (CLM) and built solutions suited to both enterprise-scale and mid-size financial institutions.
In his early career Gary excelled in a wide variety of FinTech sales management and executive roles in the UK, Switzerland and France.
Following his tenure as Managing Director at Financial Objects, which saw revenues grow by more than 300% on his watch, Gary founded and subsequently exited from Third Financial Software after it became a leading front office technology provider.