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UOB AM eyes Malaysia’s robo market

Similarly, Kuala Lumpur-based BIMB IM also launched its own robo-advisory platform last month.
A human hand and a robotic hand, meeting in the middle, touching knuckles.

UOB Asset Management in Malaysia has launched a robo-advisory service that provides customised portfolios, according to a statement from the firm.

The service, “UOBAM Invest”, is only available to corporate clients. However, the firm expects to launch the online platform to individuals by the end of the year, according to a Kuala Lumpur-based spokesman of the firm.

The platform has already been launched in Singapore for corporate investors and in Thailand for retail investors, the statement said.

“With UOBAM Invest, our clients can receive within minutes customised investment portfolios generated through our proprietary screening methodology and asset allocation framework based on their risk appetite and goals,” Lim Suet Ling, the firm’s Malaysia CEO, said in the statement.

The firm’s robo platform invests in both global ETFs and mutual funds managed by UOB AM, according to the statement. A conservative portfolio will typically comprise ETFs or funds that invest mainly in government bonds, money market and fixed income, while an aggressive portfolio will largely consist of ETFs or funds that focus on equities.

The firm noted that investors may also have the option to make their own investment decisions to build their own portfolio from a list of UOB AM’s mutual funds.

UOB AM in Malaysia is a subsidiary of Singapore-headquartered UOB AM. In total, UOB AM and its subsidiaries manage S$36.6bn ($23.3bn) as of the end of February, according to the statement.

Separately, another fund manager in the country launched its own robo-advisory platform. In April, BIMB Investment Management rolled out a robo-advisory platform, “Best Invest”, which focuses on shariah-compliant ESG investments. Like UOB AM’s platform, BIMB IM’s Best Invest makes use of the firm’s in-house funds.

Several other firms have also set their sights on Malaysia’s robo-advisory market.

Last year, New York-headquartered Wahed Invest received an Islamic digital investment management license in the country last year. In 2018, Singapore-based robo-advisory firm Stashaway received its fund management licence from the Securities Commission Malaysia to operate in the country. In 2017, Kuala Lumpur-based Farringdon Group launched Algebra, which is a shariah-compliant robo-advisory platform.

Part of the Mark Allen Group.