News & Alerts

The FundBank focus for 2024

As we go into 2024, Colm O’Driscoll, CEO updates us on what he sees as the key areas of focus for the asset management industry and what is on their minds when it comes to their banking solutions partner.

Risk

Following the banking turmoil seen during 2023 we are acutely aware that managers are focused on ensuring that their current banking arrangements are safe and secure. There is a continuing trend for managers and administrators seeking solutions to diversify fund banking relationships to avoid overreliance on a single institution. We received increasing feedback post crisis that both administrators and managers were struggling to find the right banking partner or were finding it difficult to open institutional bank accounts in an expeditious manner to meet the needs of the fund, its management company, and its investors.

FundBank offers banking and custodial solutions exclusively to the fund industry globally and works closely with North American, European and Asian firms supporting both management companies and their funds, providing bank accounts, payment services, custody and trading solutions, amongst various other required services. These accounts can typically be opened in five to ten business days from receipt of required documentation.  Additionally, account numbers can be assigned prior to account opening to facilitate the drafting of legal documentation.

FundBank provides an extra layer of comfort for its clients. As a regulated trust bank, FundBank holds client money in trust with top tier, global financial institutions deposit or in cash equivalent high quality liquid assets, with zero duration risk and credit risk. FundBank also offers secure custody and settlement services to allow clients to settle trades quickly and efficiently. Client securities are held on trust with FundBank’s network of sub-custodians.

No client funds or assets are held on the balance sheet of FundBank, and no assets are pledged or rehypothecated. The Bank’s trust structure minimizes the liquidity risk that is of particular concern for the alternative asset management industry.

FundBank only provides institutional banking solutions to the alternative investment management industry. FundBank doesn’t just understand your business – its business is your business, and we play a key role in supporting the growth and development of the asset management industry.

Customer service

With KYC being key for our compliance team, it is the same for our relationship managers. The importance of streamlined client service in a banking solutions provider continues to hinge on personal interactions and relationships, despite how key technology is to us as a digitized banking provider. As the asset management industry continues to evolve, we are told repeatedly how much our exceptional, personalized client experience remains a key differentiator to our client base. As such, 2024 will see FundBank continuing to focus on improving and streamlining our client onboarding and relationship management processes.

In addition, personalized and focused client communications also remain paramount in meeting expectations for new and existing clients. We will continue to focus on our digitized footprint and whilst this will be a critical piece of our customer service, we will continue to ensure that our personal touch points remain the cornerstone of our banking experience.

Fund managers are anticipated to give precedence to tailored services and proficient communication strategies in addressing the changing preferences of investors. Looking forward, FundBank will not only employ appropriate technology, but it will also leverage the expertise of the industry’s most seasoned team to manage it. By combining technological progress with human insight, this allows us to provide a best-in-class approach for our clients globally.

Continued enhancements to our digital capabilities

Every day we are made aware of the improvements to goods and services across all sectors as a result of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine intelligence (MI), from investor services platforms to reporting tools.

No doubt, 2024 will continue to see great advancements in all areas of technology capabilities resulting in added levels of sophistication for the industry and the information available to investors.

FundBank is ever aware of how important it is to ensure that its client experience is unmatched. We pride ourselves on being at the forefront of innovation in the banking industry. We are in the process of implementing one such innovation – a fully digitized onboarding experience, allowing our clients to open and manage their accounts in a way that is both efficient and convenient. By utilizing our customized online platform, clients will be able to complete the onboarding process quickly and securely, without the need for face-to-face interaction or paper documentation. Our platform will also offer enhanced security features, ensuring that our clients’ information is always safe and secure.

The fast pace of the global regulatory landscape

Regulatory and compliance issues continue to be a key area of concern and focus for the industry and 2024 looks to be no different.

The challenging and unprecedented operating conditions that financial services firms have seen in recent years have certainly been challenging. Although we see inflation cooling and the increases in interest rates having slowed, both of those factors continue to weigh on the economy. Considerable economic uncertainty persists, and financial and non-financial risks remain elevated.

Navigating these uncertain times will likely be front of mind for all those in the asset management industry however, at the same time, the drivers of medium-term term structural change including geopolitics and elections happening around the world in key financial locations, sustainability, and technological innovation – are no less relevant and will remain top of mind for many.

As the regulatory landscape becomes more complex so does fund structuring, resulting in specialized knowledge and the ability to manage intricate fund structures across multiple jurisdictions. At FundBank we are pleased to have among our team world class legal counsel with prior experience at global leading law firms who are on hand to assist our clients when it comes to complexities associated with their banking solutions set up.

The future

In conclusion, as FundBank embarks on the journey of 2024, our bank is poised to capitalize on the evolving landscape of the financial industry. As we look to embrace the tide of technological progress, our foremost focus will be on enhancing the digitization of our financial service platforms, seamlessly integrating AI technology into the client journey experience to provide unparalleled efficiency and personalization.

Moreover, with a keen eye on the future, we anticipate increased institutional adoption of digital assets, allowing our clients to foster a more diversified portfolio. Our commitment extends beyond conventional boundaries, as we strategically expand into new fund strategies, ensuring our clients have access to innovative and forward-looking solutions with us.

While we acknowledge the geopolitical risks that may dampen expectations, our proactive approach aims to navigate these challenges with agility and resilience. In the face of a downward trend in global interest rates expectations, we remain cautious, recognizing that the nature of this trend opens doors for strategic financial planning and investment opportunities. With these pillars as our foundation, FundBank is poised to not only navigate the dynamic landscape of 2024 but to thrive and lead in this era of unprecedented change and opportunity.

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