AXA Asia Pacific Holdings has decided to transition to a new platform for most of its wealth management products following the platform's successful implementation within the company's new North product.
In 2007, AXA went live with an investment product called North on
Wealth.net, a product by a company called Bluedoor Technologies
(now part of DST Systems) which specialises in wealth management systems.
AXA's Australian chief executive Warren Lee said the platform
had performed successfully. "The leading technology underlying this platform has
enabled us to create an automated, web-based environment that
allows a fully integrated service model, including straight-through
processing, that is low cost," he said. It was adaptable, allowing
lower cost development and flexible product delivery, according to
"Given these strengths, we have decided to make this our primary
technology platform going forward. This involves extending the
North product range to post-retirement and also extending to a full
e-wrap service, including a low cost option within the next 24
months," he said.
Between 2010 and 2012, AXA wanted to move $14 billion worth of
products currently on the Summit line's technology to North's platform,
upgrading those clients to better web access, fully electronic
transactions and easier transition to the North product if desired.
The products the company had on external platforms will remain
there, but will be kept under review, he said.
He expected that running on Wealth.net instead of the company's
current primary platform would save around 40 per cent in operating
costs in 2013 once the products were migrated. The current platform
has five different technical components, which meant that
customising software for specific products became a chore,
according to Lee. "This is clearly an expensive and complicated
model from both the development and maintenance perspectives," he
AXA had been preparing for the transition by upgrading the
capacity of the platform for the increase in client numbers.
Currently, the platform handles $1.1 billion worth of funds. It has
also been rationalising legacy products and simplifying product
The time was right for the transition, according to Lee.
"Online transaction capability is fast becoming a 'hygiene' factor
for advisors and we believe this is crucial for manufacturers and
distributors to be efficient and to be able to compete effectively," he said.
The company is also in the midst of a
three-year program to upgrade its IT architecture in Asia.