According to Sharesight, the future of retail investment industry lies in building connectedness between providers. This can be a B2C connection or a B2B connection. In either instance, it results in easier financial reporting for investors.
Sharesight is a portfolio management software system, originating from Wellington, that enables individual investors to collate and streamline their investment reporting. Institutions can also partner with Sharesight as a service for their clients. Examples of insitutions currently working with Sharesight include CMC Markets, Xero, Stockspot and ESuperFund.
Canstar asked Sharesight CEO, Doug Morris, to outline the basis of it’s competitive advantage.
Q: What is the benefit for self-directed investors in using Sharesight? Why Sharesight rather than one of your competitors?
A: Investors use Sharesight because there’s really no other way for them to see how their investments are truly going in terms of capital gains and dividends. We form the glue between online brokers, share registries, and excel spreadsheets to give our customers performance and tax reporting that’s accurate all the way down to the transactional level.
Most other providers offer portfolio tracking because they have to. In other words, portfolio admin is a byproduct of what they do, or a means to offer some other service like wealth management. Sharesight is unique in that we offer a portfolio application that begins and ends with the investor.
Q: New Zealand has a reputation for being ahead of the curve when it comes to financial innovation. Why do you think that is?
A: Kiwis are undeniably innovative. The population size and the fact that it’s an island nation forces local entrepreneurs to think globally. And cloud technology is a perfect medium for this. In our hometown of Wellington, the government deserves credit for backing technology too.
Q: You are competing in an increasingly crowded marketplace. What are your competitive advantages?
A: Sharesight is really becoming an investor’s passport, but in addition to tracking their investments, we’re enabling our customers to connect their portfolio to other useful products such as Xero. Our public APIs are the foundation of what’s becoming a marketplace for investors.
Q: What is your business expansion philosophy?
A: A main driver of growth will be overseas expansion to Canada, the US, and the UK. The growth of our Canadian edition has already caught up to that of New Zealand, our original market. Locally, we’ll also be on the lookout for strategic partners such as online brokers. A broker integration with Sharesight is a huge win for the investor.
Sharesight launched in the Australian market in 2008 and more than 20,000 portfolios utilise its service. You can find out more about Sharesight here.