Wealth management fintech firm, JHC Systems (JHC), has spent 30 years servicing the technology needs of its wealth management clients. The firm started with its first client Charles Stanley, who still use it today, and has advanced through the industry observing the increasing digitisation of the wealth sector.
Last week saw it launch its Digital Wealth Platform which draws from one centralised database and enables operations to be digitised from front to back through a modular offering. Ed Lopez, Chief Revenue Officer, JHC, explains that the firm is currently best known for its solutions such as JHC Neon, JHC Figaro, JHC Digitize and JHC Xenon.
He explains that he arrived three years ago, having spent 25 years in the fintech sector, charged with looking at how to leverage beyond wealth and brokerage and start a global expansion. The firm has now opened in Dubai.
“We provide a full front to back wealth management system,” Lopez says, “all the way from the customer, providing them with an app or a website, through the front office where the customer engages with clients, through the middle office with portfolio management, order execution, rebalancing trading and compliance, through the back office where the heavy lifting is done on corporate actions, fees and interfaces with custodians.”
Lopez reports that recently there has been a noticeable focus on client acquisition and retention within the wealth sector. “In my mind it comes down to shrinking margins,” he says. “So, what you do as a business is you keep the clients you have but make things more efficient, dealing with price sensitivity but reducing margin shrinkage.”
Lopez says that with over 60 wealth managers and brands using their software, they are familiar with the drivers and have innovated solutions through streamlining the onboarding process at the front office level, through KYC and financial planning and increasing market on trading and investments in a responsible way.
“The bulk of what we do is to improve inefficiencies from the front middle and back,” he says. “Lots of wealth managers have multiple systems from maybe 12 different companies acquired over the last 12 years, for example, so there were lots of dual entry activities or manually reposting or Excel spreadsheet migration which still requires multiple screens and multiple people.”
The new Digital Wealth Platform is, he says, extremely efficient. “One single database, no integration required to operate it beyond the core functions.”
The firm has tailored the user interface (UI) based on the function and role of the person. “If you are a front office person your UI needs to be very different from someone in the back office,” he says. “Part of what we did is that we digitised a lot of processes in the back office where there has been a bit of neglect so we addressed that as well to make it a better digital experience, not just more efficient and to reduce errors and manual intervention but also to make it a bit more modern.”
The new platform draws on the existing JHC range. “No one is being forced to use it but some firms have taken pieces of it which is encouraging,” he says. New customers will be brought onto the new platform, but JHC has designed the DWP in a way that it is not compulsory for existing customers.
“The product and service offering allow firms to digitise key processes, which will improve efficiency and enhance the experience of end users. This means wealth managers will be freed up to focus on what really matters – client relationships and retention.”