Why has AFB decided to start offering ETFs? And why now?
We have seen an increased demand from investors’ for passive products, and Allfunds plays a major role in facilitating access to financial products.
As a provider of Open Architecture Solutions Allfunds is responding to client demand.
Being a fintech company, Allfunds has now developed technology which brings together both funds and ETFs onto a single platform, overcoming some technological challenges (e.g. fractional dealing).
Why should Allfunds be my fund distribution partner from an operational perspective?
Allfunds facilitates fund operations through a Straight Through Processing (STP) approach, with a fully automated and instant asset servicing cycle. Joining Allfunds can therefore minimize operational risks and reduce costs.
Does Allfunds undertake any activities other than the provision of safe custody and administration services?
Yes, it also undertakes intermediation and dealing services. Allfunds provides solutions for the whole operational cycle from subscription trades to the settlement of redemptions.
AFB Wealth Management clients who can now use the platform to sell ETFs.
The end client who will have a greater number of investment options.
Also, regular savers who would otherwise find it difficult to save small amounts using ETFs.
ETF providers will benefit in a segment of the market that it is currently very difficult for them to access.
Allfunds will benefit from closing the gap in the industry by distributing ETFs amongst financial entities, with a consistent and continuous service offering.
What added value services will Allfunds provide over the existing funds only platform?
As it does already with mutual funds, AFB will provide a full range of ETF services to support and facilitate the distribution of ETFs, offering a single access point for all execution, information and research needs.
Which assets can Allfunds hold in custody?
Allfunds can hold any type of financial instrument but currently only holds investment funds.
Is Allfunds a Broker instead of a Distributor, i.e. Does the firm manage its own funds?
Allfunds acts only as a distributor. The firm does not have any proprietary trading. We are exclusively dedicated to fund brokerage and related custody activities.
What is “unique” or new on the AFB proposition?
No one has ever before offered services with mutual funds and ETFs on a single platform. ETFs can now be incorporated in fund wraps and investor solutions in the same way as mutual funds.
AFB will offer fractional ETF dealing which will facilitate distributors to build solutions for retail investors. Fractional dealing allows the incorporation of ETFs into regular retail saving programmes. When accessing ETFs today, investors are required to buy a whole number of shares and have not been able to invest in fractions. AFB will, provide multiple trading possibilities, including traditional equity-like trading.
Unlimited offering: AFB will offer access to any ETF listed on a stock exchange, from any ETF provider.
Is the safekeeping of assets for the account of another, a regulated activity and subject to any regulatory oversight ?
Yes it is.
What are the benefits for ETF providers?
Access to the largest distribution network in Europe.
Effective marketing and commercial efforts, thanks to the "Allfunds ecosystem".
Complete understanding of their business thanks to management information provided.
Regulatory compliance as distribution will follow regulatory standards and distribution requirements.
Cost savings and operational efficiency thanks to the automation provided by AFB IT platform.
Why does Allfunds offer information and reporting solutions?
We believe that distribution requires access to information. Fund distribution cannot be undertaken without adequate marketing and reporting tools. This includes all kinds of fund related documentation such as DFI/KIID, prospectuses, information documents, periodical public information, fund factsheet, annual accounts and any other pertinent or mandatory documents which are necessary for investors.
What are your sources of information?
For funds made available on our platform we gather and collect information directly from the fund manager and/or its transfer agent. We have a legal and business relationship with the fund provider which enables and ensures information quality. There is a full alignment between the fund operational and marketing information. The quality controls are performed constantly to guarantee the quality of the information. Allfunds has vast experience in efficiently collecting a wide variety of data and other information directly from the fund houses. This enables us to provide our clients with in depth information on the wide variety of funds available.
How do you offer and provide this information and reporting services?
We tailor our offering using a number of multi-format and multi-channel solutions based on the most convenient set-up for clients. We have a full spectrum of white labelling solutions including web services, customized fund factsheets and portfolio reporting.
Do you offer white labelling solutions to your distributors?
Yes, it is a key and fundamental service within our `one stop shop´ concept. One of our value added services is our ability to provide our institutional clients with a personalised white labelled offering including fund factsheets so supporting and enhancing their offering to their intermediaries and financial advisors. Our web based information service can be tailored to meet each client’s requirements.
I am a financial distributor. Can you help me to comply with regulatory requirements when distributing third party funds?
Yes, this service is inherent to our value proposition. We provide assistance in the distribution of financial products via the dissemination of information reporting and documentation in all kind of market segments, such as, insurance companies, fund of funds, private banks and retail platforms. We are experts on investment funds and all related information which is necessary to comply with the regulatory frameworks in each country in which we operate.
Why does Allfunds offer fund research services?
From the launch of the platform we realized the importance of making the right fund selection. We offer our institutional clients the ability to access a wide universe of funds while offering them the possibility to assist and support their clients on the selection of the most attractive funds, both from a qualitative and quantitative perspective.
How would you define your fund selection process and approach?
Our approach is totally independent and unbiased. Our fund selection process relies on quantitative and qualitative techniques with dedicated and fully-accountable analysts. The fund selection process blends the latest quantitative techniques with bottom-up qualitative tools to select the best funds in every peer group. Allfunds does not have a proprietary fund offering. Our independence is based there being no conflict of interest and a neutral sales approach which seeks to identify the best funds available for each asset class.
What are your fund research capabilities?
Our research capabilities are very significant. Allfunds has more than 25 specialized investment professionals fully dedicated to providing fund selection services, which represents one of the largest fund research teams in the world , fully dedicated to serving the needs of our institutional clients. Our research team is global with a local presence in Madrid, London and Milan, enabling us to understand and identify common local needs.
How can I gain access to your fund research services?
Our fund research services are open only to institutional clients. Allfunds Investment Services is responsible for the delivery of investment services to our clients. This team brings together Allfunds global and independent research and the institutional clients taking into account its . Each client is assigned an investment professional to ensure that information is delivered correctly and in a timely manner in line with the expectations of clients. The main goal of this team is to understand investor needs and support the implementation of investment solutions across the platform client base.
In terms of Mutual Funds, what is “Open Architecture”?
The term was originally coined by the computer industry to allow potential users to share and make use of technology without any proprietary constraints. Within the investment fund industry, Allfunds enables investors to readily offer their funds to the outside world while enabling wealth managers easy access those funds, exhaustive information and independent fund research. Thanks to Allfunds, the fund distributors may offer a vast universe of investment funds, which originates numerous advantages to the final investors.
Why does Allfunds offer such an extended list of services: operations, information and fund research?
We want to make available a one-stop solution to our clients, which invest and distribute investment funds, providing the necessary means to do so. We have spent more than 16 years enhancing the platform’s functionality to ensure operational efficiency, provide fill information and support appropriate fund selection.
What is the legal and contractual framework?
Allfunds becomes your partner in the fund distribution. Our clients have Allfunds as their counterparty for operational, legal and information matters when accessing mutual funds. The direct relationship between fund providers, financial distributors and investors remains as before.
I am a fund provider. How can I list my funds on your platform?
If you are a fund house or any other financial institution and you wish to list your funds in our platform you should contact our Fund Groups Department, which will provide you with more details.
What criteria are used to incorporate funds into your fund platform?
We are truly an Open Architecture fund platform, continuously incorporating new fund managers and mutual funds according to our institutional client’s demand. Our B2B clients and top financial distributors decide the way they want to undertake and implement their business using all the tools and services available at Allfunds. Our mission is to increase and improve the available product offering, based on client demand and seeking to offer the best products available in the market. On our platform, we offer all kinds of mutual funds including local and international funds.
I am a financial institution which needs assistance in investment in and distributing investment funds. How can I list my funds on your platform? What do I need to do to become your client?
If you are a financial institution and you wish to become our client, please contact our Sales Department which will guide you through our client take-on process.
I am a private investor. How can I work with you?
Allfunds is a service provider to regulated financial institutions and does directly not provide services to private investors. Private investors benefit from Allfunds’ services if your financial distributor or service provider is working with us.
Please feel free to encourage your distributor to contact us to become our client; you will be the ultimate beneficiary with high level of services and easier access to mutual funds.