Global wealth managers predicted to spend $35bn on IT by 2016

Researchers Ovum have predicted global wealth managers will spend $35bn on developing IT in the years to 2016, suggesting a blossoming of increasingly prevalent apps for iPad users.

Interestingly, Ovum foresees the strongest proportional compound annual growth in IT expenditure coming from Eastern Europe (17.7%), whereas UK and Irish wealth managers will lift their outlays annually by about 7.3%.

Apps are expected to be a key part of the development plans for groups.

Jaroslaw Knapik, senior analyst for financial services technology at Ovum, said: “Increasingly, digital channels are being developed to improve customer loyalty and cross-selling opportunities but also to lower servicing costs.

“They enable more self-management and closer monitoring of financial assets, helping to increase overall knowledge of finance management.”

Legg Mason has today confirmed the launch of its own app for iPad users, available for free through iTunes, and offering investors regular market insights and daily fund prices for its UK, Dublin and Luxembourg-domiciled funds.

It joins Switzerland’s Pictet Asset Management and America’s JP Morgan Asset Management, which have each also launched iPad apps for European clients since September last year.

Mike Evans, head of international marketing at Legg Mason, said: “We are witnessing a sea change in the way people consume information and, as a global business, we are committed to responding to this shift as investors around the world embrace digital technology.”

JPMorgan Asset Management’s own app is available in six European languages – English, French, German, Spanish, Italian and Dutch.

A recent survey conducted by research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners found the use of the iPad for business purposes jumped significantly between December and April, as a new iPad was released on the market.

Prior to the launch, only 13% of iPad owners were using their devices for business, but this proportion has already increased to 21% among the owners of the new version of the device.

A report by website monitor Pingdom shows that iPads account for 85% of table Web usage, ahead of Android’s 13% and an insignificant market share held by other providers.

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