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Godfrey, who did not return calls, is known to believe that managers need to be transparent with costs and fees to show they are not taking advantage of their clients. In May, he gave his support to the Better Finance campaign by Guillaume Prache, former European head of passive manager Vanguard, to achieve a better deal for investors.
Before joining the Investment Association in October 2012, Godfrey was communications director at Phoenix Group, before which he spent more than a decade at the Association of Investment Companies the trade body for the UKs investment trust industry.
The Pensions Trust
The pension fund for the UKs charitable sector has appointed two former staffers at the National Grid Pension in-house manager, Aerion Fund Management, which was bought by Legal amp; General Investment Management in 2015.
The pound;7 billion Pensions Trust has appointed Emmanuel Bocquet, the former head of alternative investments at Aerion, as a portfolio strategist and John Steel, the former COO of the company, as an investment operations manager.
The pair announced their new roles on LinkedIn and the Pensions Trust confirmed the appointments. Bocquet had worked at Aerion since 2005; Steel had been with the pension scheme since 1998, having taken a career break at the end of 2012 until joining the Pensions Trust in May.
As the in-house investor, Aerion Fund Management managed 75% of the National Grid Pension scheme and had more than pound;17.5 billion in assets until its takeover by Lamp;G at the end of 2015. The power company had announced its intention to sell off the pension scheme in May 2015 and had targeted liability-driven investment specialist managers as potential suitors.
Bocquet and Steel have joined the Pensions Trust as the fund looks to expand its internal team.
The former head of investment banking at Jefferies in France is setting up his own London-based advisory firm after leaving the US investment bank eight months ago.
Jean-Philippe Verdier, who left Jefferies last September, was one of a number of managing directors to leave the US investment banks European arm over the past 12 months. He was replaced by Jerome Peltier, previously UBSs head of investment banking in France.
Verdier, a former advisory banker with Greenhill amp; Co, registered Verdier amp; Co with Companies House in February. His firm will offer independent corporate finance advice to CEOs, entrepreneurs, corporates and private equity funds, according to his individual LinkedIn profile.
Verdier told FN in an email that he set up the firm after receiving calls from the chief executive of a French biotech firm and the head of a large information and communications technology business, adding that both were looking for independent advice on flexible retainer arrangements.
Elaborating, Verdier said the work entailed structuring and hands-on assistance on a rights issue, running a beauty parade contest and some corporate Mamp;A director responsibilities.
He is currently the firms only staff member. The lack of colleagues at this stage means that there are mandates I would not take on yet, he said.
The European chief executive of Instinet, the electronic agency brokerage that is now the focus of Nomuras scaled-back equities operation in the region, has decided to leave after more than four years in charge.
Adam Toms, who will turn 40 later this year, will depart in the coming weeks to pursue other interests, according to a statement by the firm.
He will be replaced by Richard Parsons, the brokers head of European sales and trading an appointment that is subject to regulatory approval from the UKs Financial Conduct Authority.
Toms took on the CEO role in 2012, replacing industry veteran Richard Balarkas, having previously held senior electronic trading roles at Lehman Brothers and later Nomura. He told FN that he was really proud of what the team has achieved but said the time is right to do something else and lots of opportunities are being created by new technologies and changes in regulation.
His decision to step down comes with Europes trading markets on the cusp of wholesale change as a result of the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive and other regulations.
bull; And the best of the resthellip;
Cantor and Psigma former heads launch hedge fund
The former European chief executive of US brokerage Cantor Fitzgerald and a senior fund manager at Psigma have teamed up to launch a London-based fund manager. Vermeer Investment Management will initially focus on global equities, according to James Rowsell, who will take the role of chief executive. Tim Gregory, the former head of global equities at Psigma, left the fund manager in February. Vermeer gained approval from the Financial Conduct Authority in April. The manager is still currently in its launch phase. Rowsell left the European arm of US brokerage Cantor Fitzgerald in mid-2014.
Deloitte creates 20 new partners in its financial advisory group
Accounting and consulting firm Deloitte named 20 new partners to its financial advisory group, effective June 1. Anna Samanta and Chris Shuttleworth will be based in Switzerland at the firms Zurich office, while the remaining 18 are located across the UK. Five of the UK promoted are female: Anita Aul, Jacquie Beanland, Katie Jackson, Victoria Smith and Caroline Ward. The remaining new partners are Ben Bell, Sam Blackie, Ben Collet, John Cooper, Baber Din, Duncan Down, Will Geer, David Lane, Michael Magnay, Biren Shah, Nick Soper, Chris Wildsmith and Nick Wood.
FCA appoints Butler director of supervision for the investment, wholesale and specialists sector
UK Financial Conduct Authority has appointed Megan Butler as its permanent director of supervision for the investment, wholesale and specialists sector. Butler has held the role since July 2015 on secondment from the Bank of England. Qualified barrister Butler, a three-time FN100 Woman who has made the list each year since 2013, joined the Financial Services Authority, the FCAs predecessor body, in 2000 after holding various roles at the London Stock Exchange. Her roles at the FSA included running enforcement law and policy before moving into supervision in 2008, when she became head of the team overseeing the UK operations of major investment banks. She switched to the Bank of England in April 2013 and worked in Prudential Regulation Authority senior team as the executive director of its international banks directorate.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer makes Ford Jacob FIG co-sector leader
City law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has announced Valerie Ford Jacob as co-sector group leader of its financial institutions group (FIG). Ford Jacob, who is based in New York, is also currently the co-head of the global capital markets practice. She advises a wide range of clients on both corporate and financial legal matters, including a diverse range of securities offerings, corporate governance and securities regulation. Ford Jacob joins current FIG co-sector group leaders and partners Christoph Gleske and Claire Wills.
Funding Circle co-founder takes a step back
A co-founder of Funding Circle, one of Europes billion-dollar fintech startups, has stepped back from his day-to-day activities at the company. Andrew Mullinger who set up the London-based marketplace lender with Samir Desai and James Meekings in 2010 handed over his most recent responsibilities for risk management in May. Desai, Funding Circles chief executive, said Mullinger would remain on a number of our company boards and continue to act as an adviser to the company. Prior to co-founding Funding Circle, Mullinger worked at banks Nomura and Citigroup, and accountancy firm EY in regulatory and risk management roles.
Goldman Sachs grabs restructuring banker from Morgan Stanley
Goldman Sachs has made a new appointment in its London restructuring business, hiring a managing director from Morgan Stanley to join the team. Clinton Ray is on garden leave before joining Goldman Sachs in August, according to people familiar with the matter. At Morgan Stanley he worked in the capital structure and restructuring advisory group, according to his LinkedIn profile. He reported to Ben Babcock, an ex-Lazard and Merrill Lynch banker who joined Morgan Stanley in 2008 as head of restructuring for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. At Goldman Sachs, Ray will report to New York-based Roopesh Shah, head of the global restructuring finance and advisory division.
Hogan Lovells adds capital markets heavyweights to Asia practice
Law firm Hogan Lovells has announced that Sammy Li and Stephen Peepels have joined its capital markets practice in Hong Kong as partners. The pair are recognised leaders in Asias capital markets: Lis practice focuses on IPOs and secondary offerings on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, and Peepels practice includes both debt and equity financing transactions as well as private equity and Mamp;A transactions. Li joins from Paul Hastings and Peepels from DLA Piper.
Jupiter appoints new head of its Japan Income fund after incumbent departs
Dan Carter has become lead manager of the Jupiter Japan Income fund, according to a statement by the asset manager. Carter, who was deputy manager of the fund, replaces Simon Somerville, who is leaving Jupiter after 11 years. He has been lead manager of the Jupiter Japan Select Sicav fund since 2013. Carter joined Jupiter in 2008 as an analyst on the Far Eastern equities team. He joined from Odey Asset Management where he was a fund manager on the Japanese equities team, prior to which he was at Edinburgh-based Baillie Gifford, where he was an investment analyst for both the Japanese equities and UK large-cap equities teams.
Kames Capital adds to its high-yield team
David Ennett is joining Edinburgh and London-based Kames Capital to lead its high-yield team. He will arrive from Standard Life Investments where he was head of European high yield and manager of the SLI Higher Income and European High Yield funds. Ennett will report to David Roberts, head of fixed income at the pound;57.8 billion asset manager, from September 2016. He will also take on co-management of the Kames High Yield Bond and the Kames High Yield Global Bond funds alongside current co-manager Phil Milburn, who will be returning to Kames in Q3 2016 following his period of absence due to ill health.
Nordic Capital co-managing partner steps down
After six years as Nordic Capitals co-managing partner, Joakim Karlsson will move to become head of the firms Swedish activities and lead on industrial sector investments as the firm consolidates its move to a sector and theme-based investment style. Kristoffer Melinder, who had shared the role with Karlsson since 2010, becomes sole managing partner at the European buyout firm. Karlsson said he made the decision to relinquish the role of co-managing partner to pursue his interests in deal-making and to work more closely with portfolio companies, as well as to simplify the management structure of the firm.
Stifel Europe sees Bragg depart after reshuffle
Simon Bragg, the head of Stifel Nicolaus Europe, will leave the company later this year in a management reshuffle. Bragg joined Stifel in 2014 when the US wealth manager and investment bank bought Oriel Securities, a UK broker co-founded by Bragg in 2002. After taking some time out, Bragg returned to Oriel in 2013 following a tough few years for the broker. A former banker at HSBC, Cargill Financial Markets and Hoare Govett, Bragg was tasked to grow the business following Stifels takeover. Ronald Kruszewski, chairman and chief executive of Stifel, said: [Simon] was instrumental in the process of integrating the Oriel business into Stifel and for that I am truly thankful.
Tenzing bolsters team with four hires
New private equity player Tenzing has made four hires to its team, as the firm looks to push into UK lower mid-market dealmaking. The firm, which was set up in 2015 by investors Guy Gillon and Rob Jones, has hired Sean Williams as a non-executive director, Simon Stevenson as origination and talent director, Milan Kellner as investment manager and Natalia Mann as operations manager, according to a statement. Williams led the UK Mamp;A practice at advisory firm PwC, where he worked on the buyouts of Car Trawler, Arrow amp; Ball and JAC Travel. He will provide sector expertise and strategic advice to the firm, according to the statement. Stevenson worked in a number of executive search roles before founding recruitment company Stevenson James and will work with advisers and support portfolio companies with recruitment, according to the statement. Kellner joins from the Mamp;A team at advisory firm EY and will assist in deal origination, while Mann will provide operational support to the firm.
TPAI names Alastair Sword as new global head
Tullett Prebon Alternative Investments, the alternative investments arm of interdealer broker Tullett Prebon, has appointed Alastair Sword as the alternative divisions global head. He will lead a team of 10 focusing on the placement of illiquid alternative assets. Since its formation in 2009, TPAI has developed significant experience in LP to LP fund transfers, managed auction processes, as well as direct asset divestments across the hedge fund, private equity and real estate space. Sword joins from Roubini Global Economics, where he was head of sales, prior to which he was a managing director at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in both London and Singapore.
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Mark R. Morley CFP®, President of Warburton Capital Management, LLC announced that Roy D. Ames of Broken Arrow, OK has joined Warburton Capital as a Financial Advisor. Roy graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a BS in Electrical Engineering in 1978. He then graduated from the University of Wisconsin with an MS in Electrical Engineering in 1980, and from Southern Methodist University with an MBA in 1999, concentrating those studies in the area of Finance. In 2004, he earned his Certificate in Financial Planning from Kansas State University.
Roy entered the Financial Services industry in 2009 after a long and successful career as an engineer, and soon after teaching Finance and other business topics in Northeastern State University's School of Business. His experience in this industry is broad, with expertise in portfolio analysis and trading, life insurance and insurance products, and as the Senior Vice President of a fee-only financial advisory firm in Tulsa, OK. Roy is an active member and past president of the Tulsa Financial Planning Association. As a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER(TM), Roy is committed to the highest standards of professional competence, ethical conduct and clear, complete disclosure to those he serves. Married for 36 years to Mary, Roy is the father of 2 children. They live in Broken Arrow, OK where they enjoy bicycling, gardening, and the outdoors. They are active members of First Presbyterian Church in Downtown Tulsa. "We are extremely pleased to have Roy join our firm as a Financial Advisor, and are impressed with his desire to help clients Make Work Optional and Maintain That Status. His industry experience and broad financial background will be valuable for our firm and our clients." Warburton Capital Management was formed in Tulsa in 2006 and provides investment advisory and wealth management services to business owners, professionals, corporate executives, individuals, families, endowments and foundations. The offices of the Firm are located in First Place Tower at 15 East Fifth Street, Suite 3675, Tulsa, Oklahoma, 74103.
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MINNEAPOLIS, May 31, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Skyline Medical Inc.(NASDAQ:SKLN) (Skyline or the Company), producer of the FDA-approved STREAMWAY® System for automated, direct-to-drain medical fluid disposal, announces the engagement of Dawson James Securities, Inc. in an exclusive financial advisory agreement. Under this new agreement, Dawson James is charged with advising on and implementing a financing strategy, identifying acquisition candidates including complementary products and companies and providing advisory services.
We have worked successfully with the equity capital markets team at Dawson James in recent months and are excited to be moving forward under this new agreement as we seek to fund and execute our business plan, said Dr. Carl Schwartz
, interim chief executive officer of Skyline Medical. The STREAMWAY System offers healthcare practitioners a state-of-the-art method for medical fluid disposal, and virtually eliminates contact with medical waste in the procedure room, providing lower costs and improved safety when compared with canister systems. We look forward to strengthening our capital structure and securing additional funds to invest in sales and marketing, and to pursuing acquisitions that are synergistic with our commercial efforts.
About Dawson James Securities, Inc.
Dawson James Securities specializes in capital raising for small and microcap public and private growth companies primarily in the Life Science/Health Care, Technology and Consumer sectors and is a full service investment banking firm with research, institutional and retail sales, as well as execution trading and corporate services. Headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., Dawson James is privately held with offices in New York, California, Maryland and New Jersey. For additional information, please visit www.dawsonjames.com.
About the STREAMWAY System
Skyline Medicals revolutionary, FDA-cleared STREAMWAY System is the first true direct-to-drain fluid disposal system designed specifically for medical applications, such as radiology, endoscopy, urology and cystoscopy procedures. It connects directly to a facilitys plumbing system to automate the collection, measurement and disposal of waste fluids, and minimizes human intervention for better safety while improving compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA) and other regulatory agency safety guidelines. It also provides unlimited capacity for increased efficiency in the operating room, which leads to greater profitability. The STREAMWAY eliminates canisters to reduce overhead costs and provides greater environmental stewardship by helping to eliminate the approximately 50 million potentially disease-infected canisters that go into landfills annually in the US
About Skyline Medical Inc.
Skyline Medical Inc. produces a fully automated, patented, FDA-cleared, waste fluid disposal system that virtually eliminates staff exposure to blood, irrigation fluid and other potentially infectious fluids found in the healthcare environment. Antiquated manual fluid handling methods -- which require hand carrying and emptying filled fluid canisters -- present an exposure risk and potential liability. Skyline Medicals STREAMWAY System fully automates the collection, measurement and disposal of waste fluids and is designed to: 1) reduce overhead costs to hospitals and surgical centers, 2) improve compliance with OSHA and other regulatory agency safety guidelines, 3) improve efficiency in the operating room, and radiology and endoscopy departments -- leading to greater profitability, and 4) provide greater environmental stewardship by helping to eliminate the approximately 50 million potentially disease-infected canisters that go into landfills annually in the United States. For additional information, please visit www.skylinemedical.com.
Certain of the matters discussed in this announcement contain forward-looking statements that involve material risks to and uncertainties in the Companys business that may cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by the statements made herein. Such risks and uncertainties include, among other things, current negative operating cash flows and a need for additional funding to finance our operating plan; the terms of any further financing, which may be highly dilutive and may include onerous terms; unexpected costs and operating deficits, and lower than expected sales and revenues; uncertain willingness and ability of customers to adopt new technologies and other factors that may affect further market acceptance, if our product is not accepted by our potential customers, it is unlikely that we will ever become profitable, adverse economic conditions; adverse results of any legal proceedings; the volatility of our operating results and financial condition; inability to attract or retain qualified senior management personnel, including sales and marketing personnel; our ability to establish and maintain the proprietary nature of our technology through the patent process, as well as our ability to possibly license from others patents and patent applications necessary to develop products; the Companys ability to implement its long range business plan for various applications of its technology; the Companys ability to enter into agreements with any necessary marketing and/or distribution partners; the impact of competition, the obtaining and maintenance of any necessary regulatory clearances applicable to applications of the Companys technology; and management of growth and other risks and uncertainties that may be detailed from time to time in the Companys reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which are available for review at www.sec.gov. This is not a solicitation to buy or sell securities and does not purport to be an analysis of the Companys financial position. See the Companys most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, and subsequent reports and other filings at www.sec.gov.
Source: Skyline Medical Inc.
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If you’ve watched the famous Hollywood flick ‘RoboCop’, which features a superhuman law enforcer, then robo-advisors may conjure up images of robots handing out financial advice in synthesised voices. As futuristic as it sounds, that’s not the case.
A robo-advisor is essentially an online financial advisory firm that uses automation and algorithms to offer investment advice. It not only helps you choose the right investment but also provides the platform to complete the transaction and monitor the portfolio on an ongoing basis. Through the use of online tools these new breed of advisors also promise to lower costs.
So if you are a small investor and have found financial planners way out of your reach, can robo-advisors fill the gap?
Here’s a look at how these services work, the cost proposition and what’s on offer, to help you decide.
Robo-advisory firms in India vary in the way they offer services, but predominantly offer a basket of mutual funds you can invest in. Some operate on an advisory model and charge an advisory fee. You can then invest in mutual funds through the platform for which these platforms also charge convenience fees for facilitating the transaction. The mutual fund investments are in direct plans where the returns are typically higher by up to 1 per cent, somewhat offsetting the additional fees you pay for advisory services. Direct plans save on the commission payable to the distributor.
The second category of firms operates on a distribution model, similar to traditional advisors. They advise on funds and assets to invest in and the transaction is completed through the platform, all for free. The platforms, in turn, earn a commission from the mutual fund house. For instance, FundsIndia.com recommends funds — based on in-house research — to meet your goals. You can use the platform for free, but only to invest in regular plans. If you want to invest in direct plans, you will have to do it independently.
Finally, there are also platforms that have a mixed model. They charge you for the advice in case you opt to transact on your own. Take the case of Arthayantra. It charges an annual fee of #8377;1,000 for financial advice. And you are free to buy the units directly from the fund house. But if you choose to make the investment through its platform, they will waive the service fee and offer you free advice. This is because they facilitate investment in regular option and thereby earn a commission from the fund house.
BigDecisions, on the other hand, (not a robo-advisory in the true sense) only provides guidance through calculators on how much corpus you must build to meet various goals. To invest, it directs you to sites such as FundsIndia.com.
Robo-advisors mostly offer a portfolio made up of debt and equity mutual funds. Within this, some firms such as Scripbox only offer a limited set of funds that are pre-selected by their algorithm and in-house experts.
Others may provide a wider selection of funds and some also include a wider asset base that includes gold ETFs, bonds and tax-saving investments.
Some advisors may also provide you advice on keeping your funds in cash based on market condition and a choice of liquid funds. The aim of these platforms, in the near future, is to be a one-stop shop for all financial advice, offering insurance, loan and property, and services such as tax filing.
How it works
To get started, you have to fill out an online form in the robo-advisor’s portal. The questions capture basic information, investment goals and comfort with risk. Goals could be broad-based and long term such as retirement and children’s education or short term. Users may be classified into various buckets based on parameters such as age, time horizon, quantum of investment (either lumpsum or systematic investment), nature of household (single or dual income, dependants) and risk appetite. The platform’s algorithm tells you the amount you must invest and into what categories of funds — diversified equity, gold or debt. Within these, there may be finer sub-divisions such as blend of large, mid and small-cap mutual funds based on your risk profile. While most of the platforms focus primarily on mutual funds, some such as AdviseSure also include property and PPF in their offering.
Online platforms assess your risk profile based on your responses to questions such as how you would react to a market fall. But you are not bound by the recommendations made by the platform. You still have an option to pick a portfolio that is aggressive or passive based on your comfort level.
To make an investment, you need a common account number (CAN) — a single reference for all your mutual fund investments. If you don’t have one already, you can get one within 2-4 days, after which you can make purchases on these online platforms.
On an ongoing basis, you can view your portfolio online, get alerts on fund performance, monitor and change your investments. You can also keep a tab on your portfolio’s performance. Some services also allow you meet advisors while others only run online updates.
What it costs
For now many of the platforms are free, but this may change in the long term. ArthYanthra, for instance, lets you sign up for free and obtain an assessment of your current financial health. For a more detailed report, you need to pay a fee for personal wealth advisory service, which costs you #8377;360 annually.
Typically, platforms that operate on advisory model charge an annual fee. This covers one-time advice, ongoing portfolio alerts, analysis and enabling transactions. The fee is usually a flat fee but can be a percentage of the assets in some cases. Wixifi offers a single plan where you pay 0.5 per cent of the average daily balance as fee. ORO Wealth, for example, charges a transaction fee of #8377;50 for investments of up to #8377;1 lakh. Thereafter the fee works out to 0.1 per cent of the quantum invested. Bharosa Club, on the other hand, offers three different types of plan with fees ranging from #8377;50 per month to #8377;300 per month. Consulting with human advisors, an added feature available with some firms, may be charged additionally.
You can also maintain multiple accounts under a single family account. Unovest charges you double the fee for a family account. For Invezta, you only pay an advisory fee if the recommended funds outperform the category average.
These platforms also review their recommendations periodically. For instance, Scripbox revisits its fund recommendation every year. Bharosa Club evaluates its funds’ performance every six months.
Is it for you?
If you are a small investor or a beginner, finding a good advisor may be hard. Robo-advisory can help you get started and build a good portfolio. But, if you are a seasoned investor, you may be better off choosing the fund yourself and may want to use the platform to complete the transaction. HNIs investing in mutual funds may find the flat fee structure offered by select platforms attractive.
It goes without saying that you have to evaluate the range of asset classes these firms offer, based on your needs.
Robo-advisors claim that the fund selection is based on parameters such as performance consistency vis-à-vis benchmark, across market cycles, risk adjusted performance, fund size and fund manager’s track record.
As in the case of a traditional advisor, be sure you do the necessary due diligence before you sign up for any of these online platforms. Check out the list of services on offer and detailed fee structure. Importantly, look at their disclosures and track record.
You also need to understand the limitations of these services. For instance, you may not be able to talk with an advisor when you need to — say, when the market is volatile.
A traditional advisor will always score on personal touch and the face-to-face reassurance she can offer in times of need. Also, the services offer generalised recommendations that apply to the majority. On some of these counts, online platforms may not offer the best value for your need. Even so, given that the trend is fast catching up in India, it is a space that can see a lot of action in the near future.
How it differs in India
Automated financial advisory services are kicking up action in India now, but they have been around in the US for a few years. There are at least three ways in which robo-advisory services offered in the US and India differ. One, the service is typically fully automated in the US. For instance, funds are selected and invested automatically without requiring any effort from the user. The services in India require the user to initiate the transaction and are not on auto-pilot.
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Two, investors’ money is invested in ETFs (exchange traded funds) in the US, which are passive investments. The robo-advisory services are seen as alternatives to investing in traditional actively managed funds. In India, ETFs are still in early stages and money under robo-advisory is invested in mutual funds which are actively managed. Three, the fee structure in the US is based on assets under management (AUM). For example, Wealthfront charges 0.25 per cent of AUM annually while Betterment charges 0.15 to 0.35 per cent based on the AUM. The fee structure in India is either free or a flat fee that is charged annually plus fixed charges for transactions.
There are other differences as well. Users in the US are used to paying advisory fees, but in India, where advisors could earn commissions, it creates conflict of interest. A shift is needed to get users in India pay for advice or services when a commission-free product investment is enabled online. Also, the advisory service in the US offers a lower cost solution to existing base of investors; in India, robo-advisors hope to increase penetration with affordable advice. Likewise, tax-loss harvesting — selling loss-making investments to offset gains with the aim of reducing tax payments — is an important aspect of robo-advisory services in the US. Tax is not yet a key focus area in India.