Richard discusses predictive AI applications in FinTech, including the state of the robo advisor industry.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s start by introducing our audience to yourself as well as to Bristol Gates.
Richard Hamm: I’m the CEO at Bristol Gate Capital Partners. We’re an asset management company in Toronto focused on high-dividend growth investing so we can provide our customers with more income each and every year. That’s the objective.
We believe entirely in the man-and-machine approach in an industry that is virtually bereft of any artificial intelligence. We are lucky enough to have lived with it as long as we’ve been in business over the last 10 years.
We’re also lucky enough to live in Toronto, which is one of the AI centers in the world. We have lots of different people who we can speak to in the FinTech space and beyond. Fortunately, adding artificial intelligence into our business strongly supports the idea of why we use AI based on producing great results for clients in their income and capital growth.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s double-click down a little bit on how you do what you do. Are you running a consumer-facing investment platform, or are you providing enterprise software to investment managers and banks who provide that, in turn, to their customers?
Richard Hamm: We would be a product manufacturer. We would incorporate the use of data into our process of building that product. We do it through a series of predictive analytics that can try and look at what types of companies can produce the highest dividend growth a year ahead with the least amount of measured risk.
We use AI entirely and some NLP applications on the front end of what we do when we’re building a product. Our products are distributed by banks, trust companies, and people who consume fund products.
Sramana Mitra: So your customers are the banks and fund managers?
Richard Hamm: The banks are not independent fund managers like Fidelity. They would never use us. They view themselves as competing with us. We do banks, trust companies, family offices, pensions, endowments, and foundations. Those would be our customers.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s take a few use cases across your different customer segments. Let’s take three different customer segments and do some use cases.
Richard Hamm: Let’s talk about banks. Banks in Canada are quite different than banks in the United States. They’re very narrow and protective of themselves. They’re a very small oligopoly. They control a lot of shelf space and they control the products that go on that shelf space for their customers.
We work with banks to be a part of their offering. To find us, you’d have to be Sherlock Holmes because we’re usually buried way down in the fine print. Their marketing is of their own brand and their own products. They would hire us to manage a part of a product. That’s a bank use case.