A major Australian insurance company has adopted Milestone Group’s pQuant and pControl platforms to automate a range of middle office functions spanning investment analytics and fund processing.

Zurich Financial Services Australia, a subsidiary of the Swiss-based global insurance group, will use pQuant to automate performance and attribution reporting including GIPS, and pControl for supporting functions including unit pricing and post-pricing validations, cash allocation and rebalancing, unitised order management and selected reconciliations.

Mark Walsh, managing director of Milestone Group, said cost efficiency was a huge focus in the current environment.

“As you can imagine, all the fund managers and financial market participants are under immense pressure to protect their margins,” he said.

“They have few options to reduce costs, and therefore they are looking at investments in technology which enable them to maintain controls and a proper level of risk management, through cost-effective solutions which also enable scalability.”

Zurich outsources its back office operations, but will use Milestone’s platforms to automate its middle office capabilities. 

Walsh said pQuant and pControl allowed organisations to reduce overheads without loosening risk controls in back and middle office operations. pQuant will enable

Zurich to carry out performance attribution measurements in a more real-time manner, and deal with more complex equations.

“In the past, some of the market participants have cut costs by taking people and knowledge out of the organisation and therefore when the markets turn back up again they are left with very loose controls and can run into all sorts of problems in satisfying their risk management processes,” he said.

Zurich’s Australian business operates across general insurance, life risk, investment and superannuation solutions under

Zurich’s global brand and employs
approximately 1000 people.

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