Four targets for Alfi FinTech Forum confirmed

The Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry has confirmed the four key targets of its FinTech Forum, which is intended to highlight the challenges and opportunities inherent in new digital technologies.

Speaking at a briefing in London, Denis Voss (pictured), chairman of Alfi and Camille Thommes, director general, outlined the growing demand for understanding of the key technology changes hitting the industry, and therefore how to respond as an association while also ensuring Alfi members are fully up to speed on these developments.

The Forum – certain details of which were previously announced at the Alfi European Alternative Investment Funds Conference in mid-January – will focus on the following areas, Thommes said:

  • Robo-advice
    • Including developing an understanding of existing and proposed robo-advice platforms and services
  • Data management
  • Blockchain and crypto currencies
    • Including issues such as how use of blockchain – effectively a new way of using digital ledgers – could affect trading and trade processing, for example disrupting T+2 type ledger systems
  • P2P lending
    • Including understanding how lending is moving beyond the traditional banking system, but also in mind of recent examples of P2P structures that have actually been structured at Ponzi schemes

The asset management industry – including areas such as custody, administration, trading and other support services – is subject to the potential for significant change as the result of latest digitalisation moves Alfi believes.

As such, the Forum is required to help spread an understanding of what these changes mean at a practical level for the Luxembourg fund industry: this is bracketed as spreading digital ‘know-how’, Thommes explains.

The second use of the Forum is to engage in analysis of these developments as they pertain to EU and national jurisdictional responses. For example, Alfi is keen to understand on behalf of its members what the impact may be in areas such as reporting, settlement, administration and so on, as well as ensuring relevant information stemming from analysis is shared with all those impacted.

There are also plans to ensure the Forum taps into cooperation with the Luxembourg government, which is keen to create an ICT “ecosystem” in the jurisdiction, which is also intended to capture relevant industry expertise as it develops.

Alfi expects the Luxembourg government to announce a “house of fintech” in coming weeks.

Jonathan Boyd
Editorial Director of Open Door Media Publishing Ltd, and Editor of InvestmentEurope. Jonathan has over two decades of media experience in Japan, Australia, Canada and the UK. Over the past 17 years he has been based in London writing about funds and investments. From editing the newsletter of the Swedish Chamber of Commerce in Japan in the 1990s he now focuses on Nordic markets for InvestmentEurope. Jonathan was awarded Editor of the Year at the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) Independent Publisher Awards 2017. Shortlisted for the same in 2016, he was also shortlisted in 2017 and 2015 for the broader PPA Awards category Editor of the Year (Business Media).

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