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Aussie robo platform launches in Malaysia

The platform will make use of mutual funds managed by local firm PNB.
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Raiz Malaysia, the joint venture subsidiary of Sydney-based Raiz Invest, has been granted a digital investment management licence by the Securities Commission Malaysia, according to a statement from the firm.

The licence will enable the firm to provide robo-advisory services. Its mobile platform was launched today, George Lucas, Raiz Invest’s CEO, told FSA.

The licence was the last condition precedent to be completed in the joint venture agreement with Jewel Digital Ventures, the statement noted. Jewel is a wholly-owned subsidiary of PNB Equity Resource Corporation, which in turn, is wholly-owned by Malaysian asset manager Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB).

By mid-June, Raiz Invest expects that Jewel will have completed the share purchase in Raiz Malaysia for RM 7.2m ($1.7m) and own 30% of the joint venture. The remaining 70% will be owned by Raiz Invest, which has contributed the licensed technology and RM 1.8m to Raiz Malaysia, the statement said.

Given its partnership with PNB, Raiz Malaysia’s robo-platform will make use of mutual funds managed by the asset manager, instead of using ETFs, Lucas said.

Other firms have also recently entered Malaysia’s robo-advisory market. In May, UOB Asset Management launched in the country its robo-advisory service “UOBAM Invest”, a platform which was first introduced in Singapore. In April, Kuala Lumpur-based BIMB Asset Management rolled out a robo-advisory platform, “Best Invest”, which focuses on shariah-compliant ESG investments.

Elsewhere, Raiz Invest has also expanded in Indonesia, where it secured in 2018 approval for a licence to distribute mutual funds in the country. According to the statement, around 80,000 customers in the country have signed up to the firm’s beta app.

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