Europe-wide robo-adviser bullish on Brexit

Europe-wide robo-adviser bullish on Brexit

Robo-adviser ETFmatic has said it is making contingency plans for the process of Brexit disrupting its passporting activities.

Luis Rivera, the company's chief executive, said he hoped planning for Britain's transition out of the European Union would be like the advent of the new millennium, when plans for an apocalyptic scenario proved unnecessary.

ETFmatic has recently expanded its passporting rights to 15 countries, meaning it can now operate from the UK to all 32 countries which use the system.

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Mr Rivera said: "We needed to set-up in the UK because we really like the Financial Conduct Authority. I know it sounds weird to say it but when you compare it with the other regulators around Europe they are cutting edge.

"Obviously as a business we are putting contingency plans in place. We might go for a second licence in another country if there is a really hard Brexit.

"Having said that I don't think there is much risk for the passporting model. There is too much to lose for everyone involved."

ETFmatic has said that in the first few months of its operation its app was downloaded more than 10,000 times, which it claimed was the most for any such service in Europe.

It was launched in June and provides clients with “unique” diversified portfolios for 0.5 per cent a year.

The service requires a minimum investment of £100 or €100.

Mr Rivera, who said he was personally disappointed by Britain's vote to leave the EU, said: "As a company the decision to passport from the UK was one we had made earlier.

"We could have opted for going straight for the second licence and passporting to other countries from that but our current thinking right now is there won't be real Brexit consequences until 2018 at the earliest and we don't want to complicate our regulatory situation by having more licences than needed so we would rather wait.

"We are growing by double digits every week but we are still in the early stages so we have not got significant AUM levels yet.

"Portugal, Ireland and Poland were all countries we didn't expect to have much interest but have now become important for our customer base."

He said the company is about to enter a "really big partnership" which would bring " a lot of clients" but he said he could not comment further.