Technology Expenditure Set to Soar as Asset Managers Look to Unlock the Power of Their Data

November 15, 2017


Nearly three-quarters of asset managers expect to increase technology spend in next 12 months
63% have either developed or are developing a data lake

Boston – New research from BackBay Communications and Osney Media reveals that expenditure on technology projects is set to soar in the asset management industry as firms increasingly recognize the business value of utilizing their data. The report, Asset Management in Focus, is based on a global survey of asset managers, and was officially released at The Summit for Asset Management (TSAM) in Boston today.

Nearly three-quarters of respondents (72%) expect expenditure on technology within their organizations to increase in the next 12 months, up from 57% in the 2016 survey. The increase in technology spend is likely spurred in part by large digital transformation projects, with a combined 79% indicating that their firms are either currently undergoing (41%) or are planning to undergo (31%) a digital transformation project.

“Given that it’s such a highly regulated industry, asset managers have historically taken a cautious approach when it comes to technological innovation,” said Jonathan Wiser, Director at Osney Media, which commissioned the study and organizes TSAM Boston. “The research suggests that the industry is finally turning a corner in how they approach incorporating technology into their strategic business plans.”

Projects seeking to leverage the massive amounts of data available to asset management firms appear to also play a significant role in technology strategy, with 72% holding the belief that their senior management sufficiently recognizes the importance of data as asset. This confidence in senior leadership is well founded, with 63% of respondents revealing that their firms have either developed or are planning to develop a data lake.

Bill Haynes, CEO and founder of BackBay Communications, the financial services marketing and communications consultancy that conducted the research, said: “The way investors consume information has changed radically over recent years, particularly with the growth of digital communications, and asset managers need to make sure they don’t get left behind. The survey shows that the industry is starting to make a commitment to technology in order to unearth the value hidden in the bounty of data these firms sit on.”

Other findings from the report, which explores operational issues across asset management, reveal that asset managers overall are confident that they are ready to comply with upcoming regulatory obligations such as MiFID II and GDPR, with 63% and 53% respectively affirming that they are well prepared.

In the current environment where data breaches are seemingly a weekly occurrence, cybersecurity predictably has risen as a significant concern for asset managers. In fact, nearly one in five (19%) experienced IT or information security issues that have affected the provision of service over the last 12 months. Against that backdrop, 73% said they plan to either maintain or increase expenditure on cybersecurity in the next 12 months.

To read the report and view full survey results, click here.

Survey Methodology
BackBay Communications and Osney Media conducted an online survey of senior decision-makers at investment management companies between 28th September and 13th October 2017. The survey was completed by 98 respondents from across all areas of operations including client reporting, technology, marketing, investment, accounting and finance, performance measurement, risk management, senior management and product development. Companies ranged in size from boutiques with less than $1bn assets under management (AUM) to global firms with an AUM of over $1tn.

About BackBay Communications
BackBay Communications is an integrated branding, marketing, advertising and public relations firm focused on content-driven communications for the financial services sector including asset managers, investment advisors, private equity firms and financial technology companies. BackBay takes a brand-centric approach to developing messaging and building integrated communications programs, featuring content marketing and digital delivery. BackBay offers a unique combination of content and creativity. BackBay’s services include public relations, branding, marketing plans and materials, videos, digital and print advertising, website development, and social media. BackBay is highly regarded for thought leadership initiatives and relationships with the major business media. For more information, please visit

About OsneyMedia
Osney Media is a provider of world class learning and networking events. Specialising within Financial Services, it hosts The Summit for Asset Management (TSAM) - a global series of conferences taking place in New York, Boston, London and Hong Kong. TSAM brings together stakeholders from across asset management and the wider buy-side community, in addition to the industry's leading service and solution providers. Catered for professionals across the value-chain of the business, TSAM co-locates 6 conferences focused on: Technology & Operations; Data Management; Marketing & Sales Communications; Client Reporting & Communications; Performance & Risk; Regulations & Compliance.

In addition to these events, Osney Media host two key industry groups: The Performance & Risk Association (PRA) and Ops50.

For more information, please contact us at or call the main switchboard on +44(0) 207 336 4600.

Press Contacts:

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