All of us at CN&CO – and, we hope, all of the people in our networks – have some sort of investment or trading portfolio going, either through a financial advisor or on an online platform such as EasyEquities, SatrixNOW, GT247.com or OUTvest. Perhaps you have even have more than one of these?
If you are an investor, you would most likely have come across a factsheet somewhere along your investing journey. Basically, a factsheet is a document compiled by a financial institution that provides all the relevant information about a specific investment product. It’s a useful tool that helps individual and institutional investors to make decisions about where to put their money. It’s also a statutory reporting requirement for the financial institutions themselves.
“Financial products such as exchange traded funds and unit trusts are governed by regulation and need to report on their performance on a regular basis,” explains Igor Rodionov* of Advicement Services, which offers managed investment portfolios of exchange traded funds via Easy Equities. “This is done by creating reports called minimum disclosure documents (or factsheets), which contain the product’s latest returns, risk statistics and current holdings. These documents are a great source of information and can be used effectively as marketing material to entice new and existing investors.”
But have you ever thought about what goes on in the background? The amount of data, time and expertise that are needed to put together just a single factsheet – never mind one for each product – is a huge task for financial services companies. And then they have to update them constantly as returns, risk statistics and holdings levels change.
“Typically, the process to create such documents is cumbersome and long, as it involves various departments in the organisation,” says Igor. “Data is gathered from various sources, gets analysed and finalised in spreadsheets. Charts and tables with statistics are then generated. Market commentary is gathered from analysts. This then gets sent to a design team, which collates everything and inserts it into a PDF document.”
Igor says this process can take up to a month, “… which is not ideal for investors, as new financial information becomes available with every passing day.”
Create factsheets online in a fraction of the time
Great news for financial institutions – and for investors! – is that Advicement Services has launched an online platform that helps financial institutions to create factsheets and minimum disclosure documents online in a fraction of the time. Factsheets can also be tailored to suit the marketing styles of the investment company or financial advisor.
“The platform can create documents according to a set template, incorporating various calculations and displaying engaging charts and tables, all at the click of a button,” says Igor.
Financial institutions are welcome to request an online demo account, which contains dummy data and templates for two documents.
“Using the demo account, you will be able to change the market commentary for each document as well as produce and view the documents. All of this will take just a few moments to set up and implement.”
Advicement also offers template design, calculations and charting services, a file delivery mechanism, existing system integration, data privacy and maintenance, and sourcing of financial data.
“Our clients benefit from engaging documents, quick turnaround times and cost saving due to automation,” says Igor. “These benefits can all be shared with investors themselves, creating a win-win situation all round.”
*Igor is a good friend to many at CN&CO. We met him through the relationship between Advicement Services and our partner, EasyEquities. He plays soccer with Kurt, ran the Knysna half-marathon with Carel and Rikus, joined us at the recent #Actforchange Corlett Park clean-up in Joburg and attended a recent ConFab . He’s really smart and a good guy, which is why he forms an important part of our networks.