With A Vision To Brace Up The Investment Sector, MF Utilities Is Storming The Mutual Fund Industry With Exemplary Tech-Platform and Services

With A Vision To Brace Up The Investment Sector, MF Utilities Is Storming The Mutual Fund Industry With Exemplary Tech-Platform and Services

With A Vision To Brace Up The Investment Sector, MF Utilities Is Storming The Mutual Fund Industry With Exemplary Tech-Platform and Services

Jointly devised by AMCs under the aegis of AMFI in 2015 and formally launched by the then SEBI Chairman UK Sinha, MFUI became a well-known financial service company. The Indian Mutual Fund Industry's innovative initiative led to the development of MF Utilities (MFU). The MFU is linked to benefiting, Distributors, RIAs, Investors and Asset Management Companies, by leveraging technology.

The objective behind the formation of MFU is to act as a central system for the MF Industry. They aim to create several benefits ranging from reducing costs for AMCs, to creating operational efficiency for MFDs/RIAs/RTAs. In doing so, they pass on the benefits to Investors/Industry, which facilitates a level playing field. In addition, they plan to bring many conveniences to the distributors /RIAs and investors. They also strive to increase retail penetration by allowing Mutual Funds to enhance their reach and presence in the country significantly.

Future Objectives of MF Utilities

MFU's objective is to establish itself as a centralized aggregation system and to deliver services that are dependable, robust, compliant, and of high value. Currently, they create a fair playing field for both B2B and B2C by automating business procedures and enhancing efficiency to benefit the MF sector.

MFU aspires to the following tenets in order to fulfill its primary objectives:

Cost optimization for AMCs, Intermediaries, and Investors

Creating operational efficiency

Supporting AMCs for newer markets/channels to drive more AUM and Investor growth

Providing elevated customer experience and value to Intermediaries/Investors

Services Offered by MFU For Their Target Clientele

MF Utilities (MFU) has established itself as the only platform in the Indian MF Industry to offer Financial, Non-Financial, and Centralized complaints modules and unique features with a facility of mapping all Investors' existing folios under one roof. These features have been made available to B2B, B2C, individuals, and non-individuals clientele.

MFU currently has offices in Mumbai, Bangalore & Kolkata. In addition, three more locations, Chennai, Delhi & Ahmedabad, are on their future list. It has a clientele of 40 AMCs, 35K+ Intermediators & 8.5 Lakh investors (including direct and regular schemes). They have a total employee count of 80 serving across offices.

The Inspiring Journey Of MFU's MD & CEO - Mr. Ganesh Ram

Mr. Ganesh Ram brings over 20+ years of experience in Financial Services, Capital markets, Process transformation & Investment Banking. Mr. Ram worked at Bombay Stock Exchange as MF Business Head before being part of MF Utilities (MFU).

Before this, Mr. Ram was the Head of the Mutual Fund Ops & Digital Products at KFin (RTA). Earlier, he was with Bank of America Merrill Lynch India & GE Capital for a significant time. He managed various functions like Trading Operations, Middle Office, Global Securities, and Loan Services covering Asia, EMEA & USA regions. He also has experience in managing larger teams across different regions. Academically, Mr. Ram has completed Bachelor's in Finance, PGDBA, and a Certified 6 Sigma Black Belt.

From his academic and professional acumen, he has been able to bring about a perfect blend of knowledge of both International and Domestic Capital Markets. He also possesses unparalleled experience covering RTA, Exchange & MF Industry system/Processes, etc., offering a clear view and understanding of the MF ecosystem. In 2015, Mr. Ram sensed the potential that Indian MF Industry possessed, set for significant growth; hence he indulged in acing within the MF industry.

Differentiating Factors Of MF Utilities (MFU)

Comparatively, other financial services platforms have lesser features, provide substandard investor care, and are not engaged in ensuring a Level Playing Field, making MFU the sole platform that benefits all stakeholders. Let's examine the qualities they provide and the advantages the industry enjoys:

  • MF Utilities (MFU) is the first to permit both digital and physical means of transaction. Consequently, MFU facilitates between 15 and 20% of the industry's financial transactions and 80% of its non-financial activities through physical mode. Furthermore, MFU may effectively assist companies in reducing excessive expenses and using a single form for CTs and NCTs.

  • The physical or electronic version of the single form by MFU may be used for CTs and NCTs across all AMCs. As a consequence, AMCs and MFDs may boost efficiency and save expenses by paying for many transactions using a single payment method.

  • MFU is the only platform that has provided seven distinct modules for intermediaries. While the exclusive components are offered individually to MFDs, RIAs, Corporates, Custodians, Banks, PMS, and Direct Investors.

  • The CAN concept by MFU is unique, to say the least, and works as a Universal Folio mapping to all existing investors' folios. This makes the investor and transactional life cycle simpler and more efficient.

  • MF Utilities (MFU) comprises features such as Trigger-based transactions, Non-Commercial Transactions, Schedule Transactions, Indices-based Trigger Transactions, eCollect for RIAs, Complete Sub broker model, Direct funds transfer to AMCs, Investor unit holdings, Real-time Transactions monitoring, etc. The corporate interface of MFU is the only site to provide API access, transfer funds to AMC from their Treasury system, and provide notifications to AMC relationship managers. This enables the Corporate to clear the Same Day NAV.

MFU outperforms its competition and adheres to the fair playing field mandated by the Capital market regulator. In addition, this system is inherently linked with the RTA system, has several unique features, and offers Investors and Intermediaries E2E solutions and services.

Recognitions & Rewards Earned By MF Utilities (MFU)

Their success was recognized in 2016, with MFU bagging the prestigious "Annual Golden Globe Tigers 2016 Awards for "Best Industry Infrastructure Initiative" in the Financial Services category. Soon after that, they were ranked as India's Most Promising Brand in 2016.

In the ABP News BFSI Awards 2017, MFU received "The Best Industry Infrastructure Initiative" Award. Next year, AsiaOne Magazine recognized MFU as one of "The Fastest Growing Brands 2018". In the year 2020, NexBrands Honoured MF Utilities as an Extraordinaire Brand.

The Efficient Team Behind MF Utilities (MFU)

Besides Mr. Ganesh Ram, another key executive of MF Utilities (MFU) is Mr. Kannan Subbiah, Sr. Vice President & CTO. With a whopping 25 years of work experience, Mr. Kannan has invested over 15 years in the MF industry. He has been there since the beginning of MFU and has played vital roles in implementing the unique industry initiative.

Mr. Kannan Subbiah, before joining MFU was working with a US-based leading childcare service provider heading the India Development Center for Knowledge Universe group. Earlier in his career, he had partnered with a CA firm in Coimbatore. He had also served as CTO of M/s Acsys Software.

Apart from being a CA himself, he is also a Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA). In addition, he is also certified in Governance of Enterprise IT (CGEIT), awarded by the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA), USA.

Additionally, one more key executive of MF Utilities (MFU) is Mr. Sunil Nair, Chief Operating Officer (COO). Sunil has over 20 years of experience in Operation Management, Transition Management, and Customer Service across various industries such as Registrars & Transfer agents, Financial Services, Asset Management, and Stock Broking.

Sunil has joined MFU from Reliance Securities Ltd, where he has worked as Head Settlement & Operations. He has also worked with Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management Ltd as AVP Operations.

Before joining Reliance, Sunil worked with JM Financials and KFIN Technologies managing various functions in Operations. He has completed his Bachelor's in Commerce.

A Brief Timeline For MF Utilities (MFU)

MF Utilities (MFU) hired its core team in 2013, and the System Development soon began. 22 AMCs Participated in MFU by signing the Shareholders’ Agreement; Registered with SEBI as Category II Registrar to an Issue in 2014.

After the official launch of MFU System in 2015, its mobile app was launched just later in 2016. From 2017 to 2019, they processed 2L-5L Common Account Number (CAN) requests. In 2020, they further included some new features, especially for tackling the COVID-19 crisis.

The Upcoming Trends In The Mutual Funds (MF) Industry

Strong performance by the stock markets and net inflows to equity schemes contributed to a growth in the total assets of the Mutual Fund (MF) industry. For the year ending 31 March 2022, the average assets under management (AAUM) of the sector were INR 37.6 trillion — an increase of approximately 32% over the preceding year.

The following are projections for the MF Industry for the fiscal year 2022:

-There is an expected rise in the AUM to 45 trillion from the 37.6 trillion.

-SIP inflows are also set to almost double from 12.5K crores to 25K crores.

-The AUM score in B30 locations is projected to grow up to 35-45%, which currently stands at 22%.

- ⅓ of the investors in the industry are millennials. This clearly established the fact that MF is an efficient investment vehicle.

MFU intends to scale up in order to contribute to the expansion of its market share, given all its possibilities. In addition, they want to establish a presence in distant areas and contribute to the industry's expansion via technology and robust service.

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