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Enter The Retail Investment Platform

What does it mean to deliver the future? We review what an investment platform can and should be doing to make wealth managers’ lives simpler and easier, enabling them to spend more time doing what they love – advising clients.

4 min read

The platform of the future, the retail investment platform, performs much more than what is on the Association for Savings and Investments South Africa (ASISA)‘s checklist we outlined in the first article in this two-part series, Not All LISPs Are Created Equal.

We have built our retail investment platform from scratch using tried and tested technology design principles using expert technology vendors from around the world. While specialist software powers our platform, the real magic happens when it’s combined with an array of tools and an operating model that removes the problems experienced by wealth managers.

With INN8’s retail investment platform, you get:

  • No trading restrictions
  • Automated reconciliation tools that remove the risk of finger trouble and ensure statements are correct
  • Investment proposals that are easy to understand, and simple to produce and edit
  • Real-time compliance tools that ensure wealth managers and their clients are always compliant with the latest regulations
  • Morningstar fund research tools that allow wealth managers to pick the most appropriate funds with confidence.

No Excel spreadsheets.

What does this actually mean?

Let’s assess the key functions of a LISP and see how our platform is delivering the future.

Collecting client money and executing trades

Transacting on INN8 is a straight-through process. No, really, it is. There’s no need to re-key information, thus no room for errors. You save time and improve accuracy.

Reconciling client money and client funds

Our software does the heavy lifting; the matching of client money to their account is automated with accuracy ensured. As one retirement fund trustee said to us after a demo “I’ll have one of those, please”. Spreadsheets are banned, overheads constrained which means better value, faster to you and your client.

Why does this matter? The profitability of a platform administering your clients’ money over the long term (>20 years) is very important:

  • A profitable tech-driven platform, rather than one that’s heavily reliant on people, means that scale is not a problem. It means that with every new piece of business the margin earned is able to be reinvested for technology and process improvements for advisers and clients
  • An unprofitable platform presents a risk as it will be unable to reinvest in its business, usually just scrambling to keep up with regulatory changes and eventually not meeting your evolving needs as a wealth manager

Speed to market

If your client’s application is submitted before 1 PM and your client’s money has arrived in the relevant bank account, you can expect quicker trading and settlement for most unit trusts (fund of funds and certain money market funds may vary). That’s the equivalent of trading directly with a fund manager. This trading efficiency applies equally to new money and to any spare cash that may be awaiting investment in your client’s account.

No restricted trading days

As a wealth manager or model portfolio manager, why should you be restricted to trade on certain days only? That doesn’t happen in the INN8 world. We seamlessly fit into your way of doing business. You are able to submit any number of client instructions and permutations on any day of the week and our transaction engine will elegantly queue them for execution, allowing you to concentrate on what you do best, advising your clients.

Simple compliance structure

A single nominee structure ensures client money is always protected while a simple bulk account structure adheres to all required regulation to ensure that consistency, scalability, compliance, and efficiency is enabled.

Client statements and correspondence

Gone are the client statements written by accountants who live in a paper paradigm. Intuitive, modern, web-based statements written in plain English are available to clients on our secure website at any time. Fees are always clearly disclosed and there is account aggregation across all your client’s INN8 accounts (including any balances held on the INN8 offshore investment platform).

A single point of contact
Most of an adviser’s day to day requirements can be actioned via our easy-to-use secure website. Imagine a world where (in the unlikely event you do need to speak to someone) you call and a real human answers the phone straight away. No automated message and no trying to work out which option to press to get to a different person from the last person you spoke to. Most of the time, our service enthusiast will be able to sort your query out there and then and save you the pain of queue-hopping across the organization.

Our secure website has been co-designed with the wealth manager at its centre. We are completely paperless and signatureless, barring a handful of complex processes that are imposed by regulation. The majority of high-volume processes are all straight through.

Collaboration
Our platform development hub allows the wealth manager to participate in the design of any upcoming platform changes as well as understand what is coming down the road to enhance our offering so that they can prepare for each incremental improvement as we invest in our business to empower theirs.

Click through to learn more about what collaboration means to us.

Functionality

With INN8’s retail investment platform, you can create and convert prospective clients, enter new business, top-up, renew fees, process withdrawals, retire your client, run model portfolios, update client records, research, X-ray and compare portfolios… and a whole lot more.

Fund range

Clean-priced funds are available through our open fund architecture and funds are only allowed on our platform if they pass our rigorous operational due diligence. A partnership with Morningstar has yielded a bespoke Morningstar Core Funds list that enables wealth managers to choose quality funds at the click of a button based on an internationally recognised independent fund research process.

Stay informed

There is no need for your office to stay on hold with a call centre for hours any longer. Want to know all the activity on your client’s account? Easy, it’s all available online. Feel free to search, with rich, real-time, searchable activity data available on each client account.

Paper or plastic? No thanks, I’ll take one investment platform of the future, please

Sure, most LISPs can aggregate funds, provide administration services, execute trades, generate client reports and be a single-entry point into a number of product wrappers through a website. However, as a wealth manager, when was the last time you really reviewed the performance of your platform partner? What are you and your staff putting up with by using incumbent LISPs built on inefficient legacy technology?

Our engagements with wealth managers highlighted that trying something new is difficult, particularly when it has implications for their business and their clients’ money. That’s why we have invested in a unique digital tool that reduces the knowledge and training gap associated with switching platforms. It’s the platform equivalent of no longer having to pull over your car to look at a paper map book. Like what Google Maps did for going places, you will be effortlessly directed along your journey with contextually relevant tips and guidance. Once you have what you need, it retreats into the background until the next opportunity to delight presents itself. Easily find your way with in-journey directions and nudges. If that doesn’t suit your way of working then our dedicated adviser onboarding team, key account manager or service support enthusiast are available to help.

Google Maps isn’t the only tech solving real-world problems.

Clients want reasons to trust you, their wealth manager; they want to know that you know what you’re doing with their hard-earned savings. With our technology and service experience, we help you build client trust and confidence in you.

Not all LISPS are created equal, that’s because not all LISPs are truly digital, adviser inspired, purpose-built retail investment platforms. INN8 is the LISP of the future – a true fintech platform where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Goodbye LISPs, hello platform of the future.

Our target market is IFA wealth managers and we want to be your platform partner of choice.

This article is the second in a two-part series titled, Not All LISPs Are Created Equal. Click here to read the first.

Written by

Aleks Andjelopolj

Aleks Andjelopolj

Aleks Andjelopolj holds an MBA (cum laude) from UCT and Kellogg School of Management (Chicago), as well as a Bachelor of Business Science Finance Honours from UCT. He has worked in financial services for the last 10 years, including equity capital markets, wealth, investment and financial technology. Aleks has a passion for using technology to help people and businesses solve real problems and achieve the exceptional.

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