8 Securities, a Hong Kong-based social trading & wealth management service that claimed to managing over US$750 million assets for individual investors, has secured US$9 million in Series B funding to accelerate its marketing and customer growth in Japan and Greater China.
“We will use the new capital almost exclusively for advertising our new products of Auto Portfolio (an automated portfolio service released today) and Social Trading (slated for release in early fall) in Japan. Furthermore, we will be entering Mainland China in 2014 where we have ambitious growth plans.” said Mikaal Abdulla, CEO of 8 Securities.
The new round includes participation from leading financial technology venture funds in both the US and China. 8 Securities’ original investors like Velocity Capital and Leitmotiv Private Equity, which joined a US$8 million round in 2012, also participated in the round.
Unless you have $1 million USD to invest, access to a professionally managed global portfolio is out of reach to most investors. Upon announcement of the new funding, 8 Securities released a new product Auto Portfolio to solves this problem. Only three months after launching a Japanese version in May this year, the new product is another move of the company to tap Japan’s wealth management landscape. The China & Hong Kong version of this product will be launched in two weeks, the company noted.
Auto Portfolio takes aim at Japan’s traditional financial advisers, asset management firms and private banks. The automated portfolio begins with a 3 minute online survey to assess each individual’s goals, risk tolerance and time horizon. The proprietary software then automatically generates a personalized portfolio of up to 16 global exchange traded funds with access to domestic, global and emerging markets across all asset classes.
In a single click customers can select the amount they want to invest, buy the portfolio and monitor its performance on any device and at anytime. Customers can benchmark the performance of their portfolio against popular indexes. The global portfolio is automatically rebalanced for customers based on changing economic conditions. The service costs 0.5% of the average annual value of the portfolio with no other fees or commissions.
“There are over US$15 trillion in investible assets held by individuals in Japan today which is second only to the United States”, said Nobofumi Iimori, president of 8 Securities in Japan. “There is growing demand by individuals in Japan to hold investments in foreign markets. Investors want to move beyond holding only Japanese assets and are beginning to make global diversification a priority.”
image credit: 8 Securities