A new finance community emerges

The Swiss asset management platform E-Merging is celebrating a happy occasion. Bought free from the Geneva private bank Lombard Odier, the network is starting afresh with a new concept, according to research by finews.ch.

E-Merging, a ‘facebook for independent asset managers’, was launched by the Geneva private bank Lombard Odier in early 2009. The idea behind the network was to allow this professional group to connect more easily with each other, while helping the bank to gain new clients.

The mastermind behind the project is the long-serving Lombard Odier banker Olivier Collombin (pictured). Over the years, he managed to attract to the platform financial players from some 1,100 asset management companies in almost 60 countries, with close to 400 billion in client funds.

In addition, the network was open to experts from related areas such as fiduciaries, lawyers, headhunters and tax specialists.
Foreign body in the private bank.

Foreign body within the bank

Despite this performance, E-Merging remained a foreign body within the Geneva private bank. Worse still, the participating partner of Lombard Odier was not prepared to approve the necessary means – apparently 10 million francs was needed over three years – to further develop the platform.

This is all the more astounding considering the big stir being made by fintech in the whole banking sector and the fact that Lombard Odier had been able to increase its profile signficantly through this network.

As revealed by finews.ch, a handful of former employees have now bought E-Merging from Lombard Odier and have relaunched the platform today, Thursday, under their own management.

They are: Olivier Collombin (boss), Mélanie Berkovits Previ, Katia Petrossian, Nicolas Delorme, Maxime Nowak, Xavier Bourguignon, Cédric Masson and Franck Carlichi. The network has also undergone some content changes and introduced new features.

The great opening

From now on, E-Merging will also be accessible to the end clients (private individuals), allowing them to approach individual professionals (asset managers, lawyers, tax consultants). In addition, all the employees (some 18,000 people) of E-Merging’s member firms will have access to the network. Previously the circle was limited to a few top managers.

Another new feature is the possibility for banks to present selected offers to the community on E-Merging. Finally, an app will track current user behavior.

After-work parties

E-Merging is also looking for “physical” contact to the finance scene and wants to set up partners in the different financial centers, such as London, Singapore, Hong Kong, Sydney, Sao Paulo, Luxembourg, New York, Dublin, Paris, Monaco, Zurich and Geneva.

These partners will organize events in the name of E-Merging (after-work parties, meetings, seminars), to build on the network concept.

On top of that E-Merging is organizing its third virtual finance fair VirtualFinfair on December 10th, where all those working in the finance industry can have a meet-and-greet through their avatars and take part in different seminars.


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