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- Case Study -

Strategic Asset Allocation (SAA) for Berenberg:

Proven SIGMA concept reloaded

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In this case study, we will show you how we transformed the Berenberg SIGMA wealth concept into a convenient and intuitive tool for their relationship managers within just a few months; based on our modular software Fincite.CIOS.


Berenberg's Challenges

Berenberg was founded in 1590 and is Germany's oldest private bank. At the same time, Berenberg today is one of the most dynamic European banks thanks to a consistent focus on the future with its Wealth and Asset Management, Investment Bank, and Corporate Banking divisions. To expand the portfolio of innovative solutions in Wealth and Asset Management, we launched our first joint digitalization project in 2021.

Berenberg is considered one of the pioneers in strategic asset allocation (SAA) for private clients in Germany and has more than 20 years of experience through the SIGMA wealth concept. The calculations were made by a team of specialists using software developed in-house. In order to increase the efficiency in advising wealthy customers and to meet today's customer demands, a partner was sought for the transfer of the concept into an advisory software.

The requirements for the software were clearly described: Replacement of the existing concept including enhancements in the calculation methodology. The focus was above all on usability directly by the consultant both in preparation and directly in the customer meeting and placed high demands on the customer experience.

Fincite's Solution to Berenberg's Challenge

Our partnership with Berenberg includes the integration of our modular software Fincite.CIOS, including a comprehensive feature set (e.g. mean variance, resampling, Monte Carlo simulation under a variety of constraints). In addition, we added individual requirements from Berenberg (e.g. Black-Litterman). Thanks to a responsive design and frictionless connection to the Berenberg cloud infrastructure, the software is multi-channel capable and can be used by advisors at their own workstations as well as on the road (e.g. via laptop or tablet). Direct use in the advisory meeting is thus possible and enables the advisors to respond ad hoc to individual wishes of their customers.

Strategic Asset Allocation - As a foundation for success

Strategic Asset Allocation (SAA) generally describes the fundamental allocation of a portfolio to different asset classes such as equities, bonds, and liquidity and the assessment of the interaction of these in the portfolio context. In the context of an optimization, one looks for the optimal long-term relationship between return maximization and risk minimization.

The "Modern Portfolio Theory" by Harry M. Markowitz often serves as a basis for the calculations. In our implementation, we have implemented various enhancements of this theory from Fincite.CIOS and added further enhancements from Berenberg as part of the project.

Another important component is an expansion of the possible investment universe. Starting with a more precise breakdown within the classic asset classes (e.g. by region, type or market capitalization), to the addition of liquid alternative investments (e.g. precious metals and other commodities), to the expansion to include illiquid assets (e.g. real estate and private equity). In particular, the illiquid market, which is often exclusively accessible to institutional investors, is increasingly opening up to smaller ticket sizes and is essential in a holistic approach to broad portfolio diversification.

Ultimately, Strategic Asset Allocation is also an important basis for a sustainable customer relationship due to its high influence on the long-term success of the investment.

Results of our collaboration

✓ Replacing the previous SIGMA concept

✓ Expansion of the scientific base

✓ Operability directly by the advisor

✓ Connection to the Berenberg Cloud Infrastructure

✓ Optimized responsivity for tablet use

Interactive process for data collection

✓ Expandable platform with high flexibility

✓ Software implementation in < 9 months 

Facts and Figures to our cooperation

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Portfolio Optimization

for end customers (B2C) and institutional customers.

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Python, Django, React

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Fincite CIOS incl. interactive risk questionnaire & digital onboarding and market data commission.

Download the Berenberg Case Study 

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