Raising The Investment Reporting Game - A Conversation With Landytech
Landytech, a London-based firm, has among its offerings a solution called Sesame©, which is described as a "managed solution designed to automate investment reporting and non-core activities so that clients can focus on what they do best."
It is often difficult for wealth managers of all shapes and colours to communicate investment and financial information to clients quickly, efficiently and comprehensively. In an age when more money is flowing into private market investments and illiquid asset classes, the task is becoming harder. We know that businesses such as Private Client Resources, Canoe and FundCount, among others, are busy in this area. We talk to Landytech, a UK-based firm that developed the Sesame© application. Sesame is web-based, delivering an interactive investment reporting solution. Landytech boasts an impressive board leadership, starting with Schroders chairman and (and its formerCEO) and Michael Dobson (chairman). Other senior figures include Jean-Manuel Costa (director) and Benjamin Moute (CEO).
1. What sort of firm is Sesame – where is it based,
when was it founded, etc?
Landytech is a fintech startup that has developed the Sesame platform. The company was formed in 2018 and is based in London.
2. Who are the main people involved in the business
and what do they do?
The board is chaired by Michael Dobson (Schroders chairman). The Management team is led by CEO Benjamin Moute along with COO Gregory Chouette and CTO Thomas Carsuzan.
As CEO, Benjamin oversees all activities and strategy of the firm. He was previously head of investment at Schroders NFC, a multi-billion alternative asset manager. Before that, Benjamin was a partner at NewFinance Capital, a boutique alternative asset manager which he helped to build and sell to Schroders.
3. What “problem,” so to speak, does this business
aim to solve and why?
Our focus is to empower asset owners, to help them navigate investment complexities and make informed investment decisions via a modern experience.
Investors are faced with making timely investment decisions on a growing amount of complex data but they do not have the right tools.
Some of the problems and challenges wealth owners face are for example error-prone manual processes and the one-size-fits-all static reports, with analytics tools that do not cater for the needs of today’s sophisticated portfolios. Another challenge is being able to source all investment data in a timely fashion; this makes consolidation difficult and, with this backdrop, delivering accurate and meaningful analytics becomes very complicated.
With all these challenges, wealth owners cannot make well informed decisions about their investments which creates unnecessary risk to their wealth.
4. How big an issue is being able to map a client’s
assets, both in liquid and illiquid forms, into a single place?
It’s a big issue.
Sourcing custodial data from many banks is a massive challenge for those managing investment portfolios. The Open Banking solutions cannot deal with investment data but also private banks or custodians do not provide API access. This is why Landytech is building a global network of data pipelines with those counterparties, typically in the form of SSH File Transfer Protocols, which are encrypted protocols. For private assets, the challenges are even more complex and require other smart protocols. Landytech is providing a unique solution to meet those massive challenges.
5. What’s different in this offering from what might
also be out there?
Well, first there isn’t much “out there.” Most people still rely on Excel and manual work to “get by.”
a. The system is designed to empower asset stakeholders. We want to transform end-user access to their investment information. Most solutions today service intermediaries with limited and outdated technology;
b. We cover all asset classes. Private assets often represent a majority of global portfolios and are generally not covered by existing systems or very poorly if they are;
c. The ability to consolidate client data across different managers and portfolios. This is ultimately what clients want. They have many accounts, portfolios, trusts, managers. They often get decent reports from quite a few but they cannot see an aggregated picture. When it comes to consolidating allocations, performance, risks, and compliance they are blind;
d. Our reporting capabilities give our clients on-demand access to templated or fully-customised reports at the click of a button. And that is typically on a T+1 basis. It is a game changer compared with accounting type data generated quarterly 45 days after period end and quite often enigmatic and error prone;
e. Finally, I would like to mention our “limit engine.” We built a very powerful tool that generates alerts on any type of custom specified limits. Compliance, performance, risk, regulatory, it’s very broad. So, you can be alerted if a trust is distributing more than its IPS allows, for example; if you have excessive concentration in a specific region, if a cash balance or transaction exceeds your chosen thresholds; and
f. We have many more features that improve the day-to-day productivity and access of our clients. And many more to come.