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Digitisation and the Personal Touch

Erich Borsch, COO of aixigo AG financial advisory software provider talks to TFT about the corporate’s offerings, working in tandem with clients willing to innovate and benefit from aixigo’s plethora of digital “value added services”.

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(Erich Borsch, COO aixigo AG)

TFT: Kindly summarise aixigo’s business model.

Erich Borsch: Through 19 years of experience in portfolio management software, we have made a steady evolution “in the mind” of the client and focussed the benefits of the application for the client. We understand that banks’ IT divisions need to be heavily involved right from the start. By involved I mean that the banks’ IT can “play along” in the design and during the ongoing development process. Our product catalogues include: Portfolio Analytics & Reporting Service Infrastructure, Digital Portfolio Management, Advisory Services and Risk Engine.

TFT: What advantages or added value do you offer to your customers?

Erich Borsch: First and foremost, we address the problems financial institutions may have in reinventing themselves. We assist them in creating a transformation process for the automation and digitisation of investments. With our innovations, we enable financial institutions to offer digital “value-added services” to new customer segments that may not have previously experienced this.

aixigo has further expanded the features of the High Performance Portfolio API. It accepts large amounts of data as a raw material of legacy systems, refines them quickly and flexibly into relevant information and makes them available to all customer systems. The aixigo API currently comprises almost 100 services. Each of these services is individually configurable via call parameters. For digital asset management, the API provides all the processes and functions required for a bulk business. Thus, the asset management service becomes suitable for the masses and is no longer reserved for just very wealthy clients. The flexibility of the REST API enables financial services providers to innovate their own digital customer experience. This can be via apps, chatbots or voice interfaces.

High performance means aixigo’s API services can efficiently serve millions of portfolios within minutes. Even extremely broad portfolios (> 30,000 transactions, 10-year history) can be analysed in milliseconds.

TFT: How will digital wealth management develop over the next three to five years?

Erich Borsch:  In the digital business, customer experience is the focus. If a customer does not enjoy a differentiated experience, the customer shuts off faster than we can think. Innovation has become the standard over recent years, requiring new and improved features from our digital helpers. And it’s also about relevance, not just with pretty animation, rather coupled with relevant information. As a financial services industry, we no longer only compete with each other, but with all other sectors that attract the digital attention of our customers. Our goal must be to get two minutes daily digital attention from the customer. Two minutes a day, in which they interact with our offers. If you want to be a player in the digital business, your delivery systems have to meet two requirements: Speed and flexibility. And these are also the key criteria for the wealth management industry to flourish over the next few years.

TFT: What importance will personal advice or branches have in the future?

Erich Borsch: Personal advice will continue to be an important component. But for sure, much of the personal advice will be communicated through other channels in the future. Digitisation is able to establish personal contact with the same emotions as, you know, from a face to face conversation. Especially as the current generation is extremely used to digital contact with its service providers. I therefore see a good future for personal advice, if the digital channels are able to bring customer experiences and an added value that feels comfortable and secure. It becomes much more difficult for the branch.

TFT: What are the biggest challenges for WealthTechs in general and for aixigo in particular?

Erich Borsch: As I said earlier, the key factors for WealthTech’s technology will be speed, flexibility and mass suitability. These are the absolute prerequisites for gaining acceptance in our target group for digital services in wealth management. aixigo’s task is to further expand these criteria based on the current Wealth Management Platform. The basis and foundation of the aixigo high performance portfolio management system is the “aixigo wealth management platform”. It consists of two parts. The Data Integration Layer and the API Services. The combination is unique and works like this: The Data Integration Layer takes large amounts of data as a raw material of legacy systems (no matter which), refines them quickly, as mass suitable and flexible, into information and provides this data across all customer systems. This means that proven systems can remain with the banks.

With our platform, we record the data, process it in such a way that nothing stands in the path of digital delivery. Specifically for projects this means: One-time data integration, then any available position digitally. As the cost side for banks will become increasingly important in the future, enormous costs for the banks can be saved in this way. That is because they can keep their existing systems and from this platform, banks have every opportunity to offer personalised digital value-added services.

TFT: What investment is aixigo making towards clients’ data protection and against security breaches? 

Erich Borsch: Our API gateway supports OpenID authentication and authorisation via an OpenId provider. This security layer can be integrated into LDAP, ActiveDirectory or custom solutions. Data changes are identifiable by user and timestamp in the database. Audit logging is provided for in backend services.

No data is stored on the client side. All service components can communicate via SSL/TLS encrypted connections. We provide encryption on the database level, i.e. it is possible to encrypt predefined sensitive database columns. Intermediate data streams only contain these encrypted fields. In the REST API, this data can be decrypted and delivered in plaintext in the REST response.

TFT: How do you ensure cyber security through your partner networks (and open APIs)?

Erich Borsch: The platform authorisation is based on a role/right model. The role assignment to users can either be defined via an administration interface in the platform itself, or it can be integrated into your authorisation infrastructure via our OpenID provider component. Users can be added by tenants. Each user is assigned to a role. Individual rights are assigned to roles.

 

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