Q&A on Calastone Reporting with Sharn Rai, Product Development Director______

Sharn Rai, Product Development Director

How did the idea for Calastone Reporting come about?

Reporting and reconciliation has traditionally been a complex, resource-intensive task. Each fund manager or transfer agent (TA) has a different method and cadence for delivering statements of holdings and transactions, meaning that distributors receive files in multiple formats via different delivery methods – from emails to online portals to password-protected spreadsheets – at different frequencies. The distributor then needs to collate this information, standardise the data,  upload it onto their system. And, this is all before they can start reconciling. This typically involves a lot of phone calls and emails back and forth between the distributors and managers or TAs, as they try to clear up discrepancies and track down missing information.

The sheer number of different systems and counterparties results in errors, delays, and strain on relationships. We created Calastone Reporting to remove this friction, and help the industry reconcile more efficiently and effectively.

What is Calastone Reporting and how does it work?

In short, it enables simpler, more automated reporting and reconciliation.

Fund managers and TAs send us their statements of holdings and transactions in their preferred format. We then standardise that data and send it out to distributors in their favoured format. Distributors can either receive the data directly into their back office systems, or download it from our web portal, making for faster reconciliations and register updates.

It ensures that all parties, in any location, can maintain an accurate view of their register across each of their trading partners.

What benefits do users typically see?

For fund managers and TAs, it means easier report distribution. Rather than having to provide each distributor with a statement in a different format and through a particular delivery method, they send us one format, via one connection, and we manage all of the connections to their distributors.

For distributors, the process of reconciliation becomes much quicker and more accurate. We’re removing the need to manually source and collate domestic and cross-border fund holdings from multiple sources across different formats, and instead delivering standardised data directly into their back-end systems. They get access to the whole market and receive everything they need to start the reconciliation process – all through one connection. Distributors can re-focus their resources away from managing numerous data feeds and towards providing a better service for their investors. Moreover, they can scale up without having to massively increase their costs, because they don’t have to connect with each counterparty separately.

It results in a process that is faster and more transparent, while discrepancy and work duplication is significantly reduced – having a positive impact on sender-receiver relationships.

What does Calastone Reporting mean for the funds industry?

By automating historically manual processes, it makes the industry much more efficient, and reduces the risk of data breaches and errors. Moreover, because our solution supports live reporting, users can get a more up-to-date picture of holdings and transactions, making it easier to meet regulatory demands, as well as identify and resolve errors before they cause issues downstream.

This culminates in a better experience and cost reductions for all market participants, which ultimately benefits the end investor.

What is required to implement Calastone Reporting?

Fund managers, TAs and distributors set up one connection with us – which can be done in a matter of days – to send and receive statements of holdings and transactions. On the distributor side, this is typically integrated directly into their back-end systems, but they can also opt to download reports manually from our web portal.

Report senders and receivers then agree on the frequency of reporting – daily, weekly, monthly, or ad hoc – and whether the reports are sent on a settled or traded basis.

How do you see the landscape for Calastone Reporting developing in the future?

We’re seeing more and more clients want to reconcile more frequently, and more regulatory regimes demanding it. This solution is designed to support all reporting frequencies, from monthly to daily, helping you to meet the regulatory reporting obligations across all markets in which you operate.

So, we can help all market participants scale faster, being able to support more connections without the added cost of managing them, and more easily meet shifting regulatory requirements for reporting and reconciliation.

Thinking further ahead, our Fund Services solution could alleviate the pains of reconciliation altogether by creating a more seamless, interconnected financial ecosystem.

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