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Prescient adds global execution services to offering

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Prescient Fund Services, the fund administration business in the Prescient Group, has added global execution services to its offering.

Craig Mockford, Head of Prescient Fund Services, says: “Our global execution services include a single buy-side point of contact with brokers for access to global equities, derivatives, and foreign exchange markets.
“By handing over the dealing function, fund managers can focus on analysis.”
Established in 2010, Prescient Fund Services (PFS) is wholly-owned by JSE-listed Prescient Limited and offers specialist outsourced administration services to asset managers, multi-managers and other institutional investors. Services include segregated portfolio administration, unitisation, daily pricing and client and member record-keeping.
With total assets under administration of ZAR128.7 billion, PFS categorises its services under administration, platform services, and global execution services.
Platform services include collective investment schemes and pre- and post-retirement products, while fund services cover fund accounting, transfer agency, front office and pre- and post-trade compliance.
“Administration was developed as a core competency within the group through many years of delivering the service to Prescient Investment Management and its clients. The need by smaller asset managers to access efficient and affordable third party administration was recognised and resulted in the establishment of PFS,” says Mockford.
He adds that PFS has invested heavily in fund administration over the last two years to become a market leader able to provide its services locally and globally.
For clients, the global platform means competitive execution and clearing capabilities in markets in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas, and the ability to trade from anywhere without the need for a front-office dealing function or a back-office team – which makes trading cheaper and easier.
Prescient’s global execution offering includes an extensive algorithmic trading suite, including standard benchmark algorithms and customised algorithms for different trading styles and alpha seeking strategies.
Justin Sage, Head of Global Execution Services at PFS, says: “Our global execution services are scalable and cost-effective. Due to economies of scale, PFS is able to offer mid-sized fund managers a suite of products and services that they would not normally be able to afford.
“We utilise the world’s leading IT systems to deliver operational excellence and to add value to the fund administration function. We adopt a best practice, best execution approach that gives fund managers peace of mind and the ability to focus on their core business”.
Kevin Weller, Head of Algorithmic Trading and Trade Cost Analysis for Prescient notes that, by moving dealing and transactional services into administration, PFS makes it possible for fund managers to do away with centralised dealing desks to facilitate a more objective, independent, secure and transparent approach to the dealing process.
“For fund trustees costs are important, so we’ve incorporated trade cost analysis, reporting and consultation capabilities that enable the analysis of implicit and explicit costs for each transaction.
“In this regard, Prescient has partnered with Markit, a global leader in trade cost analysis, and as a result able to deliver transaction cost analysis in the complex algorithmic trading environment in South Africa” says Sage.
The cost savings inherent in the Prescient Fund Services offering extend also to transitions, which can be effected at very low cost. This is significant given that some retirement funds change managers quite frequently.

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