Pension Fund Performance and Risk Analytics Assessment

BACKGROUND Meradia’s client, a top-tier superannuation* fund manager in Queensland, Australia with approximately A$75 billion (USD $60 billion) AUM needed accurate, timely and consistent data fit for their analytic requirements. Historically, the operations team generated Performance from raw custodial files. While a substantial portion of the assets are externally managed, the futures, FX and cash portfolios – representing major exposures – are managed and traded internally for the purposes of tactical asset allocation, rebalancing, hedging and liquidity. With no expected improvement in sight, and facing imminent new competitive market pressures, the Chief Investment Officer retained Meradia to advise and... Read Full Article

Performance Implementation for Large Insurance Company

BACKGROUND A large insurance company’s asset management division retained Meradia to help facilitate the conclusion of a challenging implementation of, and conversion to SS&C’s Sylvan’s Global Performance Measurement and Risk platform. Meradia provided portfolio accounting, performance measurement and testing expertise and identified and troubleshooted errors hindering progress. Issues impacting Sylvan, the data flows, defined acceptance criteria, test scripts/plans, project staffing, production staffing and workflow were included within Meradia’s scope of work. ANALYSIS While working with the team, Meradia identified several key issues that needed to get addressed and remedied: Business requirements were incomplete and did not capture all upstream... Read Full Article

End-to-End Process Evaluation for Service Provider

BACKGROUND A leading global provider of integrated solutions for institutional asset managers engaged Meradia to document operating procedures. As a service vendor to the industry this firm was asked by existing clients, sales prospects and regulatory bodies to provide comprehensive documentation to substantiate business practices as part of due diligence exercises. Existing documentation was fragmented, incomplete and inconsistent from team to team. Subject matter experts, while adept at daily operational responsibilities, lacked the writing and communication skills necessary for creating effective process flows or clearly communicating the rationale behind tasks. Additionally, technological underpinnings were in flux and new capabilities... Read Full Article

Operational Assessment for Multi-Family Office

BACKGROUND Meradia was retained by an $8 billion AUM multi-family office to assess their investment application stack, organizational design and operational processes. Like many investment management firms, the company had grown over time and had come to realize it was time to take a holistic review of their organically grown patchwork of systems and overall operating model that had become overly manual and inefficient. Priority functional pain areas centered around trading, accounting, reconciliation, performance calculation, reporting, document strategy and CRM. Meradia was retained to examine technology and operations, document the current state workflows, interview users, summarize the results and... Read Full Article

Accounting RFP for Multi-Family Office

BACKGROUND Meradia was retained by an $8 billion AUM multi-family office to assess their investment application stack, organizational design, and operational processes. Like many investment management firms, the company had grown over time and their system stack had become ‘patchworked’, resulting in an operating model that had become overly manual and inefficient. Our initial assessment determined that most of the functional pain could be traced back to a lack of a fit-for-purpose investment book of record. In addition to the IBOR need, the multi-family office sought a comprehensive accounting package that could meet multiple operational objectives including IBOR, General... Read Full Article

Security Master Scalability for Institutional and Wealth

BACKGROUND A leading global provider of integrated solutions for institutional asset managers used Markit EDM to provision the security master supporting their multi-client investment management platform. The organization wanted to adopt an approach that would extend the capabilities to also satisfy their wealth management (and banking) security master needs. Both within and outside of Investment Management Services, their clients have growing demands for customization. Meradia was engaged to facilitate and contribute to a series of design workshops with the aim of answering three key questions: Could Markit EDM (and the supporting systems) meet the growing needs of the Investment... Read Full Article

BlackRock Aladdin Front Office Implementation Project Manager

BACKGROUND A global asset manager with $245 billion in AUM had multiple vendor and proprietary trading systems to support equity and fixed income trading globally. The firm struggled to get a timely, accurate, and holistic view of trading activity and decided to standardize by implementing a single instance of BlackRock’s Aladdin globally. Functional scope for the full Aladdin suite included trading for equity, fixed income, private placements, and derivatives, compliance, external trading platform connectivity, risk and analytics. Stakeholders and project interface included portfolio managers, traders, quants, and program management in North America, Europe, and Asia. Meradia was engaged to... Read Full Article

Performance and Attribution Capabilities Audit for a Global Asset Servicing Company

ENGAGEMENT Meradia’s client, a global asset servicing company, acquired a Central European asset servicing firm, which included a middle-office software vendor. The software vendor served both the newly acquired Central European asset servicing business and had independent clients. Meradia was engaged to identify and evaluate ways our client could leverage this newly acquired software asset. Options included: sell the software and technology arm; leverage the vendor platform as a new foundation to replace aging North American infrastructure; and, integrate this new platform into its overall product strategy, focusing its use on particular product segment. The vendor’s performance and attribution... Read Full Article

Asset Manager Client Reporting Requirements and Vendor Selection

BACKGROUND An investment management firm with ~$100 billion AUM wanted to ensure their end-state client reporting platform would support the investment management firm’s evolving business. They retained Meradia to lead a strategic initiative to evaluate the current client reporting environment, prioritize and document future state reporting requirements. Following this, Meradia led the client through a selection process and made recommendations for future solutions and operational processes. ANALYSIS The assessment phase of the project provided a foundation to ensure the client’s end-state client reporting platform is consistent with industry best-practice and would support the investment management firm’s evolving business. This... Read Full Article

Pricing Data Process Modernization for Investment Advisory Firm

BACKGROUND Meradia’s client, an independently-owned investment advisory firm with approximately $60 billion AUM, needed to modernize their ability to manage market data, especially pricing data. The firm’s existing data architecture consisted of Excel-based processes to manage, download, review, and maintain important market data assets underlying daily positions and portfolio valuations. With continuing growth, the firm recognized that this process was limiting scalability and operational efficiency, and potentially exposed the firm to unnecessary risk. ANALYSIS In order to recommend future state options, we needed to understand current state of the market data along with firm’s IT infrastructure and future technology... Read Full Article