UBS’s new hybrid digital wealth management platform has attracted $3.7 billion in its first year. This boosts the chief executive Ralph Hamer’s strategy of winning more business from the lower echelons of the global rich.
The world’s biggest wealth manager is trying to improve its digital services to reach customers outside its super rich core client base. This is with a new online platform called MyWay, which is open to people with 250,000 Swiss francs ($278,000) upwards. UBS’s emphasis on a digital approach to customers highlights a major shift in the world of private banking. Last year May the project started and it has the potential to pull in $30 billion within the next 12 months. A UBS spokesman confirmed the target and current assets are of $3.7 billion.
Its CEO Hamers, unveiled an unexpected new strategic focus. In that the bank would target private clients, or those with up to $5 million with the bank. He made a comparison with video and music streaming services Netflix and Spotify, where people get personalized recommendations they can click on. Vontobel analyst Andreas Venditti said that for an institution that already banks more than half the world’s billionaires, the much larger pool of the globe’s 1% of millionaires presents a major opportunity. And also added that the potential for growth is huge. MyWay has attracted interest ranging from smaller clients to some billionaires.
Bruno Marxer, head of global investment management for UBS’ chief investment office, said in the past clients could be overwhelmed by the choices offered to them. But being able to drag and drop and play around with different elements that fit their personal needs and preferences is a much more intuitive and frankly enjoyable way to build an investment portfolio for many people. MyWay also has attracted larger tickets out of Asia. Roberto Rango, UBS’ head of advisory and sales for customer systems in Europe, said that soon clients will be able to access a microsite where they can explore the concept and this simulates the portfolio.