Read the interview and learn about:
- Why consolidating systems enables you to tackle complexity and achieve efficiencies
- How operating fewer systems supports automation
- Why automation enables regulatory compliance and reduces risk
- The impact of simplification on business performance
Mette Trier, Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Applied IT in Investment Management
Like its industry peers, CNP Assurances, the leading personal insurer in France and the fourth largest life insurer in Europe with EUR 335bn (excluding unit-linked) under management, is facing a changing regulatory environment, rising tech-complexities, increasing data amounts, as well as demands for more reporting and transparency. To tackle these challenges of a complex world, CNP Assurances decided to optimize its system architecture through simplification and consolidation in the pursuit of a single fully integrated solution. Winning the SimCorp Award 2017 for its achievements based on this strategy has proven that this was the right approach for CNP Assurances.
We met with Rémi Desmichels, Head of Asset Management Projects at CNP Assurances, right after he received the SimCorp Award 2017 on behalf of CNP Assurances in Barcelona in September to learn more about the insurance firm’s success story.
CNP Assurances is using one system, SimCorp Dimension, as the backbone of its operations to manage its entire range of assets – including equity, fixed income, derivatives, and private debt (the last two are ongoing projects) – across front, middle, and back office. “Bringing all assets onto the same platform has been the strategy at CNP Assurances to tackle the increasing challenges of complexity in the investment management industry,” Rémi Desmichels explains.
Managing an increased amount of data
In the past year, CNP Assurances has been faced with an increasing amount of data due in particular to its growing activities in both Europe and Brazil. “To tackle the data challenge,” Rémi Desmichels clarifies, “we decided to extend the use of our core investment management system in a range of ways in terms of handling our expanding assets portfolio.” Within alternative investments, CNP Assurances wants to decommission as soon as possible the solution formerly in place for managing the insurer’s real estate, infra-structure, and private equity assets, bringing these assets onto its core platform. “Furthermore,” Rémi Desmichels explains, “we have onboarded new financial instruments to the core platform by help of the innovative XpressInstruments/Trade Manager solution.” Finally, CNP Assurances has decided to also manage its private debt securitization funds within the core investment management system.
Within alternative investments, we want to decommission as soon as possible the solution formerly in place for managing our real estate, infra-structure, and private equity assets, bringing these assets onto our core platform.Rémi Desmichels, Head of Asset Management Projects at CNP Assurances
Taking the above initiatives, along with centralizing static data management on its core platform, has enabled CNP Assurances to achieve significant efficiency gains. Rémi Desmichels gives as an example that: “CNP Assurances has managed to reduce its accounting closing time by 50% and to move from a monthly to an intraday valuation of all our assets.” “These achievements clearly illustrate the benefits of automating the front-to-back accounting process, enabling operational teams to focus more on their core business, i.e. managing exceptions rather than working on manual processes,” Rémi Desmichels continues.
CNP Assurances has managed to reduce its accounting closing time by 50% and to move from a monthly to an intraday valuation of all our assets.Rémi Desmichels, Head of Asset Management Projects at CNP Assurances
Tackling regulatory challenges with automation
CNP Assurances also relies on its core SimCorp Dimension platform to comply with regulations like EMIR and Solvency II. “The system has helped to standardize all our major EMIR related processes, e.g. the trade repository declarations. Similar levels of automation have been achieved for Solvency II, where the data from SimCorp Dimension feeds directly into the production of quarterly reporting templates. A project has recently been launched to achieve a similar process for IRFS9 on our core platform,” Rémi Desmichels explains.
Meeting increased reporting demands
In late 2016, CNP Assurances launched a project to deploy SimCorp’s Data Warehouse solution to enhance reporting capabilities and to provide greater transparency to both its clients and its investors. The leading French insurer expect this solution to enable the firm to provide real-time reporting and give access to a number of user-friendly dashboards. “In the coming years, this solution should be the cockpit for the data used for the digitization of all these activities,” Rémi Desmichels elaborates.
Achieving one source of truth fulfills higher transparency demands
At a general level, using one single platform front-to-back has enabled CNP Assurances to enhance its reporting capabilities with a higher level of transparency for its investors and for regulators. Rémi Desmichels underlines the value of the fact that “It has also enabled us to provide our users with a consolidated view of all our assets, including static and market data. Furthermore, this overview is provided in a user-friendly environment that displays all data in an intuitive manner.”