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Andrea Busi, Directa SIM
Andrea Busi, Directa SIM

Directa SIM’s Busi details its ETF distribution across Europe


Romain Thomas talks to Andrea Busi (pictured), CEO of Directa SIM, who explains why the online trading platform has just entered into a partnership with Fidelity and BNP Paribas in distributing their ETFs across Europe.

Q: What is your role with Fidelity and BNP Paribas in distributing ETFs across Europe?

We have partnership agreements with these prestigious companies in the investment landscape that provide our clients with zero-commission operations and the ability to organise joint marketing actions. Our customers will thus be able to eliminate purchase fees on a large range of ETFs which are listed on the Italian Stock Exchange. In a scenario where monitoring and controlling costs is increasingly important for clients, it seems vital to facilitate our customers in the conscious management of their savings.

Q: Is there an increase in appetite for ETFs across Southern Europe? Who is buying them? What are they wanting to buy?

For several years, we have seen an increase in appetite for ETFs across Southern Europe, in all age groups of the population. Otherwise, a particular case is represented in the form of PAC in Italy. This is an automated savings plan for individuals, achieved through periodic and constant accumulation, monthly or quarterly, from low amounts. This simple solution allows the construction of a capital over time to be withdrawn after a prearranged number of years even, if these PACs are more related to younger clients aiming to start a process of accumulating worth, by building a plan of constant savings, for example with a diversified portfolio of ETFs.

Q: How big is your ETF business at Directa SIM?

Directa Sim is the pioneer of online trading in Italy with almost 80,000 accounts open. We offer solutions for our retail customers who are looking for competitively priced and diversified portfolios.  At the moment, the ETF business represents around 33 per cent of the total customer asset under administration and has steadily grown in recent years.

Q: How can ETFs gain further traction in Europe?

The further expansion of ETFs in Europe is linked to financial education activities which aim to build a community of investors who are prepared and aware of investment choices. But, ETF inflows are poised to challenge traditional investments in Europe as new launches, and increased education drive assets into this innovative product class.

Q: Do you plan to expand this type of partnership with other ETF providers?

Yes, we are conducting negotiations aimed at concluding further commercial agreements with some of the world’s largest ETF providers. New collaborations will help us continue to offer solutions for our retail customers who are looking for competitively priced, diversified portfolios. Retail investors are interested in increasingly strategic solutions, and we are glad to be able to make them available on Directa’s platform. At the present time, we offer the possibility of subscribing to an investment plan (PAC) on ETFs issued by Amundi, DWS, iShares, VanEck and WisdomTree and negotiable at zero cost.

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