Waters Rankings 2020: Best Mobile Solutions Provider—Tier1 Financial Solutions

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The mobile solutions category has been traditionally dominated by the largest firms in the capital markets, as previous winners include Bloomberg, Morningstar, Morgan Stanley, Thomson Reuters (now Refinitiv), and FIS. This year’s winner, Tier1 Financial Solutions, isn’t exactly a startup or small—the 12-year-old company has more than 19,000 users—but it is a different kind of company compared to those aforementioned stalwarts. And the disruptive, Toronto-based vendor might be perfectly situated to succeed in a post-Covid world.

President Jiro Okochi says that before March, it would have been unheard of to have an entire investment bank trading desk working 100% remotely along with buy-side and corporate clients. It is clear, though, that the banks that were nimble and in the cloud were able to adjust more easily.

“As a result of Covid-19, we have seen our mobile app drive increased adoption of our CRM at the user level given its ease of use at home,” Okochi says. “Similarly, we have seen new lines of business being added to our CRM platform by our existing customers who have accelerated their rollout plans.  There are many banks—especially as you look to the middle markets—that are not yet fully software-as-a-service for capital markets and investment banking technology. They are seeing the challenges of using a VPN into their workstations and wishing they had their CRM and data accessible not just via mobile, but even from their home desktops and laptops, which may not be professional grade.”

Through its CRM, Tier1 has aimed to set up a system where the data flow is processed automatically from contact and holdings information and all interactions seamlessly captured with straight-through-processing of actual commissions and fees from trade tickets.

“Once you can get to this level, then the power of the CRM is realized as you can start analyzing the data and improve how you serve your customers, resulting in higher revenue and happier clients,” he says. “At the end of the day, banking competition is fierce, and margins are always under pressure, so banks are looking for that edge to complete the next transaction.”

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