Interview with Silvio Sestito, CEO at Phoenix Finance SA
"WealthArc provides the highest data quality and is very user-friendly. Thanks to that I no longer waste 30 minutes every day making sure that the clients’ data I have is correct."
Silvio Sestito, CEO at Phoenix Finance SA
Our customers are our greatest asset. Their opinion is extremely important to us and it directly influences the development of our system. We invite you to read a short interview with Silvio Sestito, CEO at Phoenix Finance SA, conducted during a webinar hosted by us for members of VAV-ASG –the largest Swiss organization of External Asset Managers.
Silvio Sestito is the Managing Partner at a dedicated wealth management company focused on UHNW individuals. He is a member of a self-regulating organization (SRO) for Swiss financial intermediaries subject to the Money Laundering Act (AMLA) and subordinated to the FINMA.
Phoenix Finance SA is a financial partner committed to providing the necessary guidance for those aiming at taking optimal actions in their financial life. From taking strategic decisions to understanding what the logical and practical next steps are, the company guides them through complex decisions.
Phoenix Finance SA uses WealthArc from 2020.
Etienne: The financial market has been experiencing a significant increase in cost pressures, local and global competition and new regulations. How do you see companies in your craft evolving in response to that in five years time?
Silvio: First of all, in the next couple of years External Asset Managers such as Phoenix Finance will need to reposition themselves and become less of asset managers and more partners with their clients. Second, the ongoing digitalization of the financial market and implementation of different AI tools into it will eventually completely exclude manual work, so we will be able to spend more time guiding our clients through the processes and advising them. Especially as they become more and more educated in finance and investment tools. This shift will require companies in our sector to become more agile and able to adapt quickly to changing circumstances. That thinking was behind our decision to implement WealthArc and streamline our business processes as soon as possible.
E: When you entered this business, you probably used different tools for different tasks: one for client data management, another for managing portfolios, yet another for invoicing, etc. Why did you decide to switch to an integrated Portfolio Management System (PMS)? What prompted that decision?
S: We wanted to streamline our processes and make compliance with all new regulations hassle-free. The character of our job, that of external assets managers, has recently changed and now it is much more than just managing portfolios. We are ensuring a more integrated business flow that also involves cross-border activities, which in turn requires compliance with ever changing regulations. At the same time, the scale of our operation has become bigger and this brings with itself dealing with an increased amount of data coming from different sources and taking more actions to do our job properly. Therefore, adopting a comprehensive PMS solution that would allow us to stay on top of all that was a natural decision. We now use WealthArc as the main tool for managing our business.
E: What are the main benefits of using WealthArc?
S: First of all, WealthArc is very user-friendly. You don't need any IT knowledge to be able to use it to its full potential. Second, our clients’ data is always correct and even if there is a discrepancy, I know that someone from the WealthArc team is already working on fixing it. This gives me confidence that in the morning I can simply start working straight away.
My working day is usually divided between three main tasks: updating myself on the data on buying, selling etc., checking the controls for regulatory compliance, and feeding the system with new information that is crucial for being able to work efficiently with clients and monitor their portfolios. With WealthArc, I'm able to focus 100% on doing all that instead of being distracted by the necessity of maintaining the system – which, unfortunately, was the case with some tools I used in the past. Also, I no longer waste 30 minutes every day making sure that the clients’ data I have is correct. In our two years of experience with WealthArc these two factors have proven to be the key to success.
E: The main objection to implementing a PMS in an organization is usually the length of the onboarding process or the resources necessary for a successful implementation. Did these two factors indeed prove to be an issue for you? How did it go in your particular case?
S: From the very beginning I was guided through implementation by the same person, which greatly simplified communication. The entire process was very easy – there were no long meetings and briefings, no time wasting. We were provided with some useful templates for providing client data, info on banks we use for automated feeds etc., and then WealthArc populated the system with that data making it ready for us to work with. Compared with the tools I had used before, this was apiece of cake! We have also been receiving great assistance from the WealthArc support team – whenever there is an issue, it is usually resolved within an hour.
E: We’re very glad to hear that feedback, Silvio. Thank you very much for sharing your experiences with us and we’re looking forward to continuing our successful cooperation.
S: Thank you!
This interview was conducted on February 23, 2022, thanks to VSV-ASG, by Etienne de Bejarry, Sales and Account Manager at WealthArc. If you want to follow him, please go to his LinkedIn profile.
To watch the full recording of the webinar, click below.