Investment accounts

Authorised and regulated by the UK’s FCA to provide investment accounts, we are bound by CASS rules to segregate and protect client assets.

October 2019 investment update

One of the most common questions asked in client meetings is ‘What makes Dolfin different’? Clients often feel that they want their investment manager to stand out from the crowd and to be delivering something ‘better’ than their peers.  Read more in our October monthly investment update, now available to download and view online.

Cybercrime: Threat and opportunity

With cyber criminals constantly on the lookout for new ways to attack companies’ resources and compromise their data, there are numerous start-ups entering the cyber security space. At the same time, an estimated skills shortage of some 3 million people has left organisations struggling to recruit and retain skilled professionals. We look at what is being done in companies to ensure that the industry keeps pace with cyber criminals, and investment opportunities in the space.

Dolfin shortlisted twice in the International Investment Awards 2019

Simon Black, our Head of Investment Management, has been shortlisted in the ‘Emerging Talent of the Year’ category and Dolfin as a firm for ‘Excellence in Client Service’, in the annual International Investment Awards. Voting is now open.

The rise of wealthtech

Fintech has come of age – and it’s given rise to a new generation of tech-savvy wealth managers.

24 September 2019 / Technology

“Our entire lives are digital today,” says Seb Dovey, a wealth management expert and board advisor to fintech platform Moneyhub, who believes that when it comes to managing wealth, we should no longer be thinking in terms of humans versus technology. “It’s not a question of either/or, but rather, a question of how,” he says.

The concept of wealthtech has gathered plenty of attention in the past few years, following the path of Monzo, Revolut and similar fintech startups. Wealthtech takes aim at the wealth management industry, attempting to attract high-net-worth individuals and the wider market. Using sophisticated algorithms and artificial intelligence, wealthtech firms hope to offer similar services to traditional wealth management companies, but at a much lower cost.

Until now, most wealth management firms have been slow to take up digital technologies, convinced that their clients’ needs can only truly be met with a personalised, bespoke service. That could be a mistake, however. A recent PwC survey found that 47 per cent of high net worth individuals (HNWI) under 45 would consider using wealthtech tools such as robo-advisers and similar systems to manage their money.

Wealthtech is increasingly hard to ignore. So, what is the state of play in this sector and how will it fit in with the wider wealth management landscape?

Investment flooding in

If money attracts money, wealthtech seems to prove the rule. Funding for wealthtech startups has surged in the past five years or so. Research by FinTech Global shows that some $2.5 billion was invested in wealthtech start-ups in the first quarter of 2019 alone – that’s more than half the $4.6 billion invested in all of 2018.

Wealthtech fits under the umbrella term ‘fintech’, but is itself something of an umbrella term. It encompasses a wide range of technologies which focus on different aspects of wealth management. These include:

Robo-advisors

Perhaps the best-known class of wealthtech, these tools provide a kind of entry-level investment platform. Users open an account online and hand over capital up front (which can be as low as a few hundred pounds). They then complete a short survey on their goals and appetite for risk and then leave an algorithm to do the rest, choosing stocks and shares for them. Examples include Wealthsimple and Wealthify, although most of the established investment firms now have their own alternatives.

“$2.5 billion was invested in wealthtech start-ups in the first quarter of 2019.”

Digital brokerages

Digital brokers essentially replace (or enhance, depending on who you ask) human brokers, providing investors with accessible information about the stock market and opportunities to consider. Digital brokerages such as eToro and RobinHood allow users to call the shots, deciding on where to invest without incurring a stockbroker’s fees.

Micro-investment

With a focus on the mass market, micro-investment companies like Stash and Acorns allow customers to begin investing with as little as £5. For those without large sums of money at hand, these platforms aim to generate savings over time.

There are of course plenty of other start-ups jostling for position to tackle wealth management in its diverse forms – from retirement funds to portfolio management tools. Dovey points out that wealthtech companies are focusing both on the customer-facing experience (think smartphone apps for managing wealth) as well as the business back end of wealth management – using AI and clever algorithms to provide wealth managers with better information.

The next wave

“We’re really in the third wave of wealthtech,” Dovey explains. First came disruptive innovators such as Nutmeg in 2011 or eToro, first launched in 2006. Next, a slew of start-ups entered the market offering a diverse range of wealthtech tools. And today, Dovey reckons, we are seeing many of the major wealth managers begin to bring the best of this technology in-house.

We are trying to create a bionic model of wealth management,” – Richard Webb, Dolfin

This is evident at Dolfin, says Head of Technology Richard Webb. “We are trying to create a bionic model of wealth management,” he explains. This approach involves a combination of personalised, human services which HNWIs have always valued, but enhancing it with a range of technologies which make it faster and more efficient to provide this service.

Dolfin is making this possible by bringing together sophisticated IT systems which offer the best information to its advisors. This should in turn allow advisors to offer an even more personalised service to customers.

With every other aspect of modern life being managed through digital platforms, it seems almost inevitable that wealth management will go the same way. And, with a ‘bionic’ approach combining digital know-how with the human touch, HNWIs can expect to get the best of both worlds.

Read More

Postcard from Oman

A major maritime trading post for centuries, Oman’s strategic Arabian Peninsula location fostered a nation of traders, tacticians and empire-builders. Fast forward to 2019, and there’s a new wave of opportunity on the horizon for investors, says Adrian Christofides, Director, Ultra-High-Net-Worth and Family Offices in Asia, Dolfin.

Adrian Christofides
/ 17 September 2019

Team Human vs Team Tech

Douglas Rushkoff, media theorist, documentarian and Professor of Media Theory and Digital Economics at Queens College, CUNY, argues that by unthinkingly embracing disruptive technology, we could lose sight of what makes us human.

Dolfin
/ 10 September 2019

Alternative plans

Alternative investments present an inviting opportunity for wealth managers, but they are not without challenges: for many wealth managers, offering a more diverse range of investments can prove too cumbersome and costly without significant technology upgrades.

Dolfin
/ 3 September 2019

Investment accounts

Dolfin’s investment accounts safeguard securities and cash, while ensuring you or your clients can take full advantage of multi-asset, multi-currency, and multi-strategy investments.

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About us

Founded as a London-based wealth boutique in 2013, today we’re a diversified financial services firm with an international presence and our own bespoke technology platform.

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