Asset managers are being forced to increase their technology spending because of regulatory changes ...
Asset managers are being forced to increase their technology spending because of regulatory changes to pensions and other markets according to the chairman and chief executive of sofware and services company AFA Systems Mike Hart.
His comments came as AFA reported preliminary results for its financial year ended 31 December.
AFA, which sells into the banking and asset management markets, faced a tough year as financial institutions went through some severe belt-tightening in the face of protracted economic downturn.
But the need to meet regulatory approval is leaving many companies without choice: they must spend more on technology to meet cost-cutting targets as they introduced new products, such as stakeholder pensions.
AFA is launching a new product, Benefit, into the asset management market in the next couple of months, Hart adds, which will enable more self-administration by employees and will make it easier for companies to sent statements over the web to employees.
Overall, there are some "green shoots" starting to appear in the form of increased contracts with customers, Hart says, although there remains a significant amount of consolidation to come in the area of software and services firms targeting financial services providers.
"People don't want to buy 6 different products from 6 different suppliers then implement them. A lot of niche players in our market are falling by the wayside in any case."
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