Highlights from the Endowus WealthTech Conference 2022
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Highlights from the Endowus WealthTech Conference 2022

Oct 2022
Sep 2022
EWC 2022 - Endowus WealthTech Conference

Burgeoning growth in Asian wealth accumulation

When it comes to wealth accumulation, Asia has come out tops with the highest five-year growth rate in financial wealth at 68%. This is compared with 26% in Europe and 55% in North America.

This is the burgeoning growth that WealthTech players are seeking out, particularly so for those tapping the opportunities from Asian wealth, according to the Endowus-KPMG WealthTech: Looking Ahead report.

Asia is set to surpass Europe as the world’s second largest wealth hub by 2026. Over in Singapore, the pool of high-net-worth individuals and ultra high-net-worth individuals grew by 126% and 158% respectively between 2016 and 2021.

Other key findings from the report include:

  • Local WealthTech venture funding hit more than US$161 million in 2021, a sevenfold increase from just US$23 million in 2017.
  • Early-stage and late-stage average venture deal sizes in Singapore each surged to a record high of over US$15 million in 2021, indicating boosted investor confidence in the Singapore WealthTech venture ecosystem. This increase in average early-stage deal size was partly attributed to US$44 million raised across two venture rounds by Endowus.
  • With a preference for investing digitally, the new generation of investors also has greater access to information, driving them to desire not only more sophisticated products but also greater control over their investment portfolios. These investors also expect greater pricing transparency.

<medium-btn-link>Download the report here<medium-btn-link>

Read more: Sharp, savvy, self-directed: the rise of the digital wealth investor

Endowus WealthTech Conference: panel discussions

The strong potential of WealthTech growth was at the centre of the Endowus WealthTech Conference 2022. Here are some key highlights from the panel discussions at the event. 

Panel 1: State of WealthTech in Singapore — a fireside chat

Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief Fintech Officer, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)
Samuel Rhee, Chairman and Chief Investment Officer, Endowus

  • The surge in WealthTech in Singapore highlights how more needs to be done to improve the landscape.
  • There needs to be a way for WealthTech companies to come to an understanding with banks in Singapore for a massive sectorial upgrade of our infrastructure to serve clients in the market. There has to be a reconfiguration in the industry, and how they view their clients — to improve on advice and managing clients. 
  • There is a structural problem in the wealth management space, and technology provides many opportunities such as efficiency. User experience, advice, and cost are the most important aspects of wealth management.

To watch the replay of this fireside chat, click here.

Panel 2: Seizing new opportunities in the burgeoning private wealth space in Asia

Joel Teasdel, Head of Wealth Management Group, Asia ex-Japan, Dimensional Fund Advisors
Patricia Quek, Managing Director, Head of Wealth Management (Singapore), UBS
Marcio Bogoricin, Head of Asia Wealth Management (ex-Japan), PIMCO 
Edward Moon, Managing Director and Head of Asia Pacific Global Wealth Management, Apollo

  • Globally, in the private wealth space, there has been a trend of clients seeking lower-cost, reliable, and transparent vehicles for investing. The challenge lies in digitalising in a scalable way, giving access and more personal attention, and having good financial outcomes.
  • Families are looking to invest in alternatives with the potential for higher returns. Alternative investments represent about 40% of their portfolio, with private equity (PE) set to rise within the next five years. Families are crypto curious rather than crypto committed, and have more sustainable investments. 
  • Half of new wealth owners will be women over the next 10 years. Women find affinity in investing in areas they care about, such as healthcare and education, and are also tech savvy. 

To watch the replay of this panel discussion, click here.

Panel 3: Is ESG investing on the right track to building an equitable and sustainable world? 

Jessica Cheam, Founder and Managing Director, Eco-Business 
Chitra Hepburn, Head of APAC ESG & Climate, MSCI
Dave Fernandez, Director, SMU Sim Kee Boon Institute for Financial Economics 
Sylvia Chen, Senior Sustainable Officer, ESG Research & Engagement, Amundi

  • There is a transition away from exclusions in sectors, and towards ESG (environmental, social, and governance) integrations to help with investment processes and decision-making. And among Singapore-based investors, younger generations are more focused on social causes. 
  • Asian economies are relatively more diverse in nature as compared to Europe or US, hence the ESG principles in Europe and the US are not easily transferable to Asia. There needs to be standardisation in how ESG is measured. 
  • A high ESG score may not necessarily reflect the specific social or environmental impact that an investor is looking to support, therefore it is critical for clients to demand more evidence of the ESG impact of their investment choices. This will also be a catalyst to bridge the data and knowledge gap to qualify the real and relatable impact assessments.

To watch the replay of this panel discussion, click here.

Panel 4: From founding to scaling, where are WealthTech firms headed?

Gregory Van, CEO, Endowus 
Varun Mittal, Chief Growth Officer and Group Head of Digital, Singlife with Aviva 
Choo Oi-Yee, CEO, ADDX
David Grant, Co-founder and COO, Gotrade 
Deepak Khanna, Head of Wealth and Trading, Revolut Singapore 

  • Legacy infrastructure is becoming too expensive to maintain for it to catch up with the times, and is pushing the incumbents to transition to WealthTech or FinTech.
  • Among many investment and trading solutions, there will be bundling and unbundling phases, with players either providing specialised services or a host of solutions on a super-app. 
  • Asia has a few dynamics that makes it a very young investing landscape. Wealth planning and wealth thinking among Singaporeans are not as developed as they are among Americans and Europeans, so the focus should be on education. 

To watch the replay of this panel discussion, click here.

Panel 5: Decentralised finance (DeFi) and new gen investing

Kay Van Peterson, Co-founder, D-Central
Anton Ruddenklau, Partner and Global Head of Fintech, KPMG International 
Katherine Ng, Managing Director, TZ APAC
Gerald Goh, Co-founder and CEO, Sygnum
Jeremy Ng, Co-founder, OpenEden

  • There is increased scrutiny and regulatory spotlight on the bad behaviours in the DeFi space. The industry needs to acknowledge that there has been a loss of trust, which it has to rebuild. 
  • Digital assets are no longer synonymous with cryptocurrency — it's much wider than that, and different digital assets are all at different stages of adoption. More than 52% of the mass affluent are invested in crypto.
  • A growing area of DeFi is the tokenisation of physical assets, specifically in real estate, which facilitates the redistribution of assets. 

To watch the replay of this panel discussion, click here.

Panel 6: Tech and finlit: the best marriage to birth a smart investor

Jamie Lee, Head of Editorial and Content, Endowus
Loo Cheng Chuan, Founder, 1M65 Movement
He Ruiming, Co-founder, The Woke Salaryman
Gerald Wong, Founder and CEO, Beansprout

  • The world is changing rapidly — black swan events that were previously few and far between are now commonplace. It is ever more imperative that investors are prepared and build a resilient portfolio that can weather the storms of the changing world today.
  • Knowledge is key in helping an investor build confidence. The right investor insights and philosophy, coupled with the right tools, strengthen investors’ resilience and prevent them from being easily swayed by market volatility. 
  • While the proliferation of freely available information has given investors a new level of independence, investors are facing a new set of challenges in differentiating factual information from misinformation and fake news. Information conveyed should be credible, simple and actionable, with no jargon or terms that may not be understood by those outside of the industry.  

To watch the replay of this panel discussion, click here.



This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered as an offer, solicitation or advice for the purchase or sale of any investment products. It is recommended that you seek financial advice as to the suitability of any investment. Whilst Endow.us Pte. Ltd. (“Endowus”) has tried to provide accurate and timely information, there may be inadvertent delays, omissions, technical or factual inaccuracies or typographical errors.

Any opinion or estimate above is made on a general basis and none of Endowus, nor any of its affiliates, representatives or agents have given any consideration to nor have made any investigation of the objective, financial situation or particular need of any user, reader, any specific person or group of persons. Opinions expressed herein are subject to change without notice.  

Investment involves risk. The value of investments and the income from them can go down as well as up, and you may not get the full amount you invested. Past performance is not an indicator nor a guarantee of future performance.

Please note that the above information does not purport to be all-inclusive or to contain all the information that you may need in order to make an informed decision. The information contained herein is not intended, and should not be construed, as legal, tax, regulatory, accounting or financial advice.

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