Capital Alliance Groups’ digital initiatives continue to challenge the norms of investment banking

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Since its inception in 2000, Capital Alliance Group (CAL) has grown to become one of the country’s leading investment banks.

Their digital transformation journey is being guided by their desire for innovation to keep up with a fast-paced industry.

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In order to find out more about how CAL is able to meet the evolving needs of its clientele in the current investment landscape, we sat down with CAL’s Chief Information Officer, Tharindra Kulasinghe, who provided valuable insight into the firm’s future forward digital transformation initiatives.

Allianz Sri Lanka | General & Life Insurance Solutions

What is the current status quo of CAL’s digital transformation initiatives?

In recent years, CAL has focused on using technology to help raise its efficiency in capital markets while maintaining a high degree of operational stability. Driven by digital transformation to achieve their strategic goals, CAL has become one of the first investment banks to be supported by the latest cloud technologies, data analytics and digital KYC technologies.

Over the years, we have established good relations with global technology giants and also established a dynamic in-house technology team. The combination of global expertise and in-house talent is powering our digital transformation journey, leveraging cloud-based infrastructure and industry-leading productivity tools to offer around-the-clock availability and seamless productivity gains.

Our data warehouse architecture and home-grown analytics platform have greatly increased our collaboration capability and capacity for data-driven intelligence. We have greatly reduced our capital expenditure on physical technology, allowing us to improve our return on investment and explore other avenues for growth and success.

How have CAL’s digital initiatives changed customer experiences?

In terms of optimising end-to-end customer experience, we introduced video KYC (Know Your Customer) processes. By incorporating such technology into our customer portal, we have been able to facilitate paperless, digital signature-backed onboarding for investment products. Needless to say, this offers a winning combination of greater convenience and safety for customers.

CAL was, in fact, one of the first companies in Sri Lanka to leverage the use of e-Signatures in 2016. This empowered our customers to open an account from any locale in the world, while eliminating the hassle of filling out paper forms.

As I said earlier, CAL also uses a fully integrated customer relationship management system, resulting in more efficient customer service. We believe in a technology-first and future-forward approach, which relates to why CAL was one of the first investment banks to use this product.

What can you tell us about the digital onboarding process?

This paperless, end-to-end digital onboarding process is available via both mobile and online web channels. Overall, I must say this is tailored to be highly customer-centric with an enhanced user experience and digitised workflow, resulting in an effortless and fast-tracked process that can be accessed anywhere and anytime by customers in an increasingly contactless world.

With video KYC, CAL enables an encrypted audiovisual engagement, offering customers live assistance with the onboarding process, making the experience more efficient with visual verification, digital signatures, and multi-factor authentication.

The adoption of such technologies is certainly a reflection of how we seek to reimagine how people invest in the new normal, addressing emerging realities as well as online privacy concerns, and utilising our capabilities to assist and better serve our customers in such unprecedented times.

In your opinion, what role does digitisation play in initial public offerings (IPOs)?

I believe that it plays a significant role in helping clients reimagine their IPO process, while offering a wider investor reach to corporates seeking to raise capital in this new, increasingly contactless world. CAL’s newly launched IPO Portal seeks to achieve exactly this.

Leveraging the use of digital signature technology for elevated authentication and security, the portal allows users to apply online for upcoming IPOs of companies intending to list on the Colombo Stock Exchange, making the investor bidding processes seamless, paperless, and contactless. In addition, registered users will also be able to receive notifications on future IPOs announced by CAL to join in on upcoming investment opportunities.

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