To say that the digital transformation or the digitalisation of business is in vogue is nothing new. Artificial intelligence, big data and biorobotics are just a few of the innovations that theorists claim will come to embody the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and are all markers of a wave of development that got underway a number of years ago.
Overwhelming technological disruption will be one of the main challenges facing societies in the coming decades and will present significant tests in terms of cultural transformation. The investment advisory industry is not immune to these difficulties. Already, global corporations are growing inorganically in the investment sector by betting on and integrating with fintech firms, which use algorithms to automatically process everything from account openings to tracking investments. This approach provides benefits such as 24-hour access to services, fixed cost savings and competitive commissions. Clearly, the race to dominate new technologies has begun; now, the winners and losers will start to become clear.
At BCI Asset Management, we are aware of global technology trends and appreciate that each region will enter the race in its own time and way, depending on how deeply technology penetrates different markets. The company understands these new parameters and is committed to growing its knowledge and incorporating these technologies with the advice we deliver to our clients. It all starts with the modernisation of our investment process.
The race to dominate new technologies has begun; now, the winners and losers will start to become clear
In recent years, we have introduced new technologies for data analysis, programming and processing with the aim of making better investment decisions. In doing so, we have achieved greater efficiency in our existing routines, many of which are now automated, freeing up time for thinking about new investment themes.
Our team has added new programming languages to its systems, allowing us to generate a proprietary fair-value model for Latin American fixed incomes. This process, formerly based on an econometric multivariate model, is now a model with dynamically calibrated parameters employing a complex algorithm for processing large volumes of data and thousands of iterations to produce a better fit for customers.
Another benefit of the digital revolution is that increasingly sophisticated data science is available. When we research companies to invest in and the issuers whose debt we acquire, we can access more reliable data, which is available in real time and is collected more efficiently than through meetings with a company’s management team.
At BCI Asset Management, we are embracing new technology and acquiring knowledge by training our analysts and portfolio managers not only so that we have experts on our team, but so that our entire investment unit has a common language that is in keeping with industry developments. In this regard, we believe we are pioneers in Chile when it comes to incorporating new technologies into the investment process. In fact, the investment team looks for these skills when screening applicants and bringing on new hires. In other words, it is no longer enough to only have specific financial training: we are now looking for innovative thinkers who already have skills in programming, data science and analytics.
These key changes are necessary for businesses to live up to clients’ requirements and earn and keep their trust. Today, BCI Asset Management serves all segments of the industry: individuals, private banks, corporations and institutional investors. With total assets under management worth over $10bn, we are also the fastest-growing fund management company in terms of average managed mutual fund value in 2019.
Our new corporate purpose is to dare to make a difference. We believe we are well aligned with our target audience, which increasingly demands access to distinctive value offerings across segments. In 2020, we will continue to consolidate our presence in Latin America while delivering expert advice derived from our evolving industry knowledge. We will also remain engaged in the digital race that is captivating our industry and, in doing so, continue to lead the asset management business in the region.