Dynamic Planner, today announces the appointment of Christophe Ponette as Managing Director for Europe to lead the company’s EU expansion. Christophe was previously the MD of Avaloq, the European Banking and Wealth Technology Provider for Benelux, speaks multiple languages and has over 25 years’ experience working in sales and management positions in European markets including The Netherlands, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg and Belgium.

His appointment follows an extensive, two-year exploratory process which has looked intensively at the needs of European financial services firms, asset managers and clients as a result of MiFIDII, IDD and the growth in risk-based investing.

Christophe will work in collaboration with Simon Colboc who has joined Dynamic Planner in a non-executive capacity. Simon has 25 years’ experience in Financial Services, including executive positions at Fortis, BNP Paribas and Prudential Plc. He heads up FECIF’s work on pan-European pensions and runs the Financial Services Practice of Paris-based firm CMI Strategies.

Dynamic Planner has signed an agreement with The European Federation of Financial Advisers and Financial Intermediaries (FECIF) an independent and non-profit-making organisation exclusively at the service of its financial adviser and intermediary members, who are from the 27 EU countries plus the UK and Switzerland; it is the only European body representing European financial advisers and intermediaries. FECIF is based in Brussels, at the heart of Europe and will be working with Dynamic Planner to identify and introduce potential partners.

Dynamic Planner has already completed the localisation of its risk and sustainability profiling instruments for France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Belgium working with in-country experts and financial advisers to ensure they adapt to local requirements. Dynamic Planner will localise its full functionality including: reviews, goal based cash flow planning and suitability reporting to provide its one financial planning system to European clients.

Ben Goss, CEO, Dynamic Planner said: “Backed by almost two decades of experience of Dynamic Planner in the UK, we are now taking our leading financial planning system to the Continent. Europe is in the foothills of an enormous shift in the way that advisers help households manage their finances and prepare for retirement in terms of the investment risk they need to take and the regulation that they face. The market feedback we have had is that we can help financial services firms successfully meet these challenges as we do in the UK.

“This is a natural progression for Dynamic Planner and an incredibly exciting time for us as both a team and a business. We have already learnt a great deal from our engagements with European partners, advisers and experts about how financial advice is given in different countries, for example in the area of sustainability, and much of this will be beneficial for our overall product for our UK clients too.

“Our mission is to help firms match people to suitable portfolios through engaging financial planning and we believe there is a huge opportunity to contribute the expertise and one financial planning system technology we offer in the EU.”

As part of the exploratory process, Dynamic Planner’s Head of Psychology and Behavioural Insights Dr Louis Williams, conducted a large-scale country specific and analysis study of a cross section of the populations in France, Germany, Italy, Belgium and Spain to understand attitude to risk (ATR) and views on sustainability to assist in the creation of bespoke psychometric questionnaires for each territory. Local financial advisers reviewed translations and provided their views on the question set and framework.

Key differences between the five European countries and UK population include:

ATR Profiling:

  • Belgium and Germany have significantly higher average levels of risk tolerance in regard to investments compared to France, Italy and Spain;
  • All European countries appear to be more risk averse than the UK population;
  • Significantly more Europeans from all five countries were a risk profile 2 (4.49%- 7.54%) and 3 (11.52%-18.87%) and fewer a risk profile 5 (14.75% – 18.62%);
  • Significantly fewer UK respondents were a risk profile 1 (0.23%), 2 (0.74%), 3 (3.55%) and 4 (14.09%), and more a risk profile 5 (31.23%), 6 (27.19%) and 7 (16.7%).

Sustainability:

  • French respondents have significantly higher average scores when measuring the importance of sustainability in comparison to Germany, Italy, Spain and Belgium;
  • More European respondents view sustainability as of higher importance than UK counterparts;
  • Significantly fewer respondents from France, Germany, Italy and Spain (10.69% – 14.76%) have a low importance sustainability profile. The UK have significantly more within this profile (27.67%);
  • Significantly fewer respondents from the UK consider sustainability to be of high (8.24%) and very high importance (3.8%).

Christophe Ponette, Managing Director, Europe, Dynamic Planner said: “We have undertaken extensive country specific research to enable us to understand what is needed and begin to adapt what we offer to each market. This has already informed the design of a range of country specific, multi-language risk profiling and sustainability questionnaires. This insight has also highlighted a need for more education around financial risk and this is central to what we do at Dynamic Planner.

“Large organisations in Europe face many challenges – ageing populations; low savings rates and clients with assets held across different institutions. Above all there is a need to create a culture of investment, improving the overall customer experience and establishing a better and more efficient integration of the financial planning process. We believe Dynamic Planner can provide the answer to these challenges.”

To find out more about how Dynamic Planner can help organisations in Europe, please see our Corporate Brochure and our Guide to Client Profiling in Europe, both available here