Stocks

Common MF platform to enhance customer experience in service-related transactions

Suresh P Iyengar Mumbai | Updated on July 28, 2021

Seen as game changer, akin to UPI impact on payments domain

Interoperability amongst RTAs (Registrars and Transfer Agents) of the mutual fund industry is expected to enhance customer experience in terms of launching complaints, getting account statements and updating personal details. (Market regulator SEBI, on Monday, urged RTAs to develop a common platform by December-end to deliver an integrated experience to investors across the industry.)

Harsh Jain, co-founder and COO, Groww, said the new platform has the potential to elevate mutual fund investors’ experience in a manner similar to the way UPI has changed the payments domain.

RTAs, private firms registered with SEBI, maintain records of mutual funds and provide investors a single-window service for all investment-related information. RTAs are considered the backbone of the MF industry as they support the entire mutual fund ecosystem and provide seamless interfaces to AMCs, fund accountants, exchanges, depositories and depository participants, mutual fund utilities, payment aggregators, and multiple banks.

Integration of RTAs will enable investors to provide their personal information with one mutual fund house and use it across the industry. Leading RTAs Computer Age Management Services and KFintech have started the process of integration.

Three phases

Sreekanth Nadella, CEO, KFin Technologies, said the interoperable solution will go live in three phases with full roll-out by year-end. The first phase covers non-commercial transactions (service requests of investors), financial portfolio, CAS (consolidated account statement) among others, phase two will see the launch of the mobility platform.

The last phase will include commercial transactions and integration with ecosystem partners for value-added services. A sizeable quantum of phase one has been completed, he said.

The integration of RTAs will be a great boon for booming online platforms.

Harshad Chetanwala, co-founder, MyWealthGrowth, said there have been many occasions when investors have had to reach out to every AMC or RTA to update details or put forward service requests.

Such requests can now be taken care of through just one request and the necessary update will happen across all AMCs, he said.

“The platform, when opened to distributors, can provide an additional avenue for transaction just like in BSE, NSE, and MFU. This platform should be looked at more as an enabler to distributors and not as a challenger,” he added.

Sandeep Jethwani, co-founder, Dezerv, said the platform has the potential to reduce execution costs. The key pain point of getting data will also get addressed.

However, it has to be seen whether the platform will be able to ensure data security and meet the December-end deadline.

Published on July 27, 2021

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