kasina to Publish Asset Management Industrys First Comprehensive Study of Financial Intermediary Segmentation Initiatives

Intelligent DistributionSM Study to be Released in April

NEW YORK (March 17, 2003) – kasina, a management consulting firm for the financial services industry, is conducting an innovative study of the evolution of distribution practices in the asset management industry, the company announced today. The final results of this research will be published in kasina�s Intelligent DistributionSM whitepaper in April.

�Among asset management firms, there is a disconnect between how firms gather data from their financial intermediaries and the how that data is analyzed and used for sales and marketing purposes,� said Steven Miyao, chief executive officer of kasina. The firm interviewed 70 leading asset management firms across the globe to identify best practices regarding the segmentation of financial intermediaries for this study.

�We found that most firms use a three-tiered approach of prospects, producers, and top producers, rather than looking at advisor profitability based on the needs and value of the intermediary,� noted Miyao. �The latter approach, which we refer to as Intelligent DistributionSM, is a much more efficient and profitable strategy for asset management firms.�

To date, kasina�s research has found that firms� strategies have only been marginally successful for three primary reasons:

  • Market Share Mentality � Focus on simply gathering assets, not on profitability.
  • Technology Focus � Focus on CRM technology deployment versus strategy.
  • Silo Strategies � Business-unit focused strategies, rather than enterprise strategies.

Miyao noted that few firms have taken an Intelligent DistributionSM approach, where they take a macro-level view of the challenges facing their segmentation practices. As defined by kasina, Intelligent DistributionSM is the process that asset management companies should use to gather and analyze customer data, to convert the data into valuable segmentation information, and to implement effective business processes to maximize company profitability.

�Asset management firms are committing significant resources to employing customer relationship management, or CRM, systems, which do not work on their own,� said Miyao, whose research has found asset management companies expect to spend more than $1 million on average on CRM in 2003, up slightly from the $980,000 allocated for these initiatives in 2002.

The preliminary results of kasina�s research indicate that 78 percent of asset management companies do not currently use predictive models as inputs into their advisor segmentation schemes. Seventy-five percent do not have an accepted and documented definition of customer relationship value across all accounts and products.

Continued Miyao, �Asset management firms can benefit from a smarter, more global approach to distribution analysis and information management and application; that is, evaluating business processes based on their effectiveness rather than with a systems focus. We believe the final results of our study will assist firms in developing more sophisticated distribution efforts.�

kasina is wrapping up several months of extensive research into the asset management industry�s best distribution practices and use of financial intermediary data. The firm surveyed 70 asset management firms and vendors in Canada, Europe and the United States, interviewing senior level executives and analyzing quantitative data. The finished whitepaper, which kasina expects to publish in April, will identify best practices, provide a detailed breakdown of current practices, offer input from marketing and sales directors on the effective use of customer information, as well as identify various intermediary segments.