Mary Uduk

The Acting Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms. Mary Uduk, has charged investment advisory practitioners in the country to embrace emerging technologies in order to enable them deliver prompt and efficient investment advice to their clients at all times.

Uduk, gave the advice in Lagos recently, while delivering a keynote address at the 2018 Investment Advisers and Portfolio Managers (IAPM) forum/launch of Association of Corporate and Individual Investment Advisers (CIIA), with the theme: “The Future of Investment Advisory.”

She stressed that organisational success was largely dependent on a firm’s ability to adopt strategic approach to the changes and disruptions in the industry.

She also stated that that the future of the Nigerian investment advisory industry was dependent on the capacity of its stakeholders to confront and overcome the challenges plaguing it.

Uduk said: “Technology is fast remodelling financial activities. It is for this reason that you all will agree that a critical factor for the future of investment advisory in Nigeria is the use of technology for advice delivery.

“The import of technology to the investment advisory industry has been announced with the emergence of robot advisory and it is expected that in the near future, artificial intelligence will quickly take over numerous investment advisory roles.

“Technology has also improved client-adviser relationship in multiple ways. Since we all acknowledge that technology is a major game-changer for the industry, it is expected that investment advisers will fully embrace technology to improve their service delivery.

“This combination and acceptance of technology is very vital for the future of the industry. Furthermore, as the appetite for investible instruments by investors increases, the demand for financial advisers will certainly increase.

“To keep pace with this industry growth, there is need to attract, train and integrate the next generation of investment advisers, who will not only advise but equally help in the digitalisation process of the industry.”

Uduk, who noted that the bedrock of every industry was subject to an evolving body of knowledge, added that the objectives of IAPM stood out as a model that would establish top-notch educational and training programmes for the production of credible and seasoned investment advisory practitioners.

According to her, such trained practitioners would be able to deliver qualitative services that align with customers’ expectations and satisfaction, thereby building investors’ confidence.

Also in his remark, the President of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Mr. Abimbola Ogunbanjo, said the AIPM had over the years responded positively to the changes in the industry to meet the needs of its members and bring stability to the Nigerian financial system and wider economy.

He stated that the enactment of the Pension Reform Act 2014 had put the Nigerian pension industry as one of the fastest growing industries in the country, saying it climbed from N265 billion in 2006 to N8.14 trillion pension assets as at 2018.

“This exponential growth is a pointer to the nation’s growing interest and awareness on pension matters,” he said.

Earlier in his welcome address, the President of IAPM, Prince Abimbola Olashore, said the CIIA which is the trade group arm of the IAPM would focus on the standardisation of the practice of investment advisory and self-regulatory engagements.

“Its major responsibility as an association is to put in place standards and ethical behaviour that will restore investors’ confidence in the market,” he explained.

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