Itaú to launch investment application in November

Itaú Unibanco will launch the ion next month, an application that promises to change the way people relate to investments, exclusively for Finsiders Claudio Sanches, the bank’s director of investment and pension products.

The project, which involves 150 people (80 hired during the pandemic), began to be conceived about nine months ago. It was born out of the pain of clients, who started asking for a digital platform focused on investments.

„In the laboratories we do with clients, the need arose to have a single investment app, to concentrate all the products and all the information, reports“.

The new application, in Android and iOS versions, will be put on the street as an MVP, says the executive, citing that the bank has been working for two years with agile methodologies, short deliveries and multidisciplinary teams. Today, the solution is being tested with a user base and the day before yesterday (6), the institution sent an e-mail to employees inviting them to try out the new tool, according to the text to which Finsiders had access.

„Almost weekly, we have been testing it with customers. We designed a screen, we talked to the customers. We went back home to move. It was a process that has been evolving until we reached the final version of the design, which we have today. The ion is not born ready, but with a MVP concept“.

Without opening details of the experience that the user will have in the app, Sanches says that the bank sought to drink from the fountain of applications of non-financial companies, with which people are accustomed in their daily lives. The idea is for the ion to concentrate the entire investment portfolio of the individual customer, with an equal experience for all segments – from retail to Personnalité.

„Today we have the brokerage house app, which in time should be migrated to this new product. And the bank’s application will clearly communicate with the ion, which will have two major dimensions: information and portfolio monitoring, with many graphs, information on product liquidity, dividends, profitability“.

According to the executive, the ion is born with the challenge of customising the investor experience. The tendency is that the person who applies more in actions, for example, receives more information and reports on the subject. Of course, the new platform will not be launched with all the features, but there will be an evolutionary process, says Sanches. „I would say that in six or seven months we will have the application with all the functionalities“.

The creation of the application is the latest strategy of the country’s largest private bank, which began to open its investment platform for third-party products as of 2017 and has intensified the movement in recent years with the entry of new managers, while maintaining 49.9% of XP’s capital, which amounts to R$436 billion in custody and 2.3 million clients.

According to Sanches, currently around R$ 80 billion are invested in third-party funds available on the Itaú platform. In all, the bank has 427 of its own products, in addition to 1,073 third-party products.

This year, the bank also created a „multimesas“ project, for which it brought 42 managers from different homes to reinforce the team and thus develop new products within the asset.

„There are several pieces of a puzzle that are being put together so that we have a very structured and robust offer for customers“.

Analytics has also been an important link, with billions of simulations made by the algorithms, he says. While the bank is increasingly trying to customise the product offering for investors, it is reinforcing the arsenal of user experience and interfaces for customers who prefer to self-serve when making financial applications.

Heated market

Itaú’s movement takes place at a time of real boiling in the Brazilian investment market.

Last week Santander announced the purchase of 60% of Toro Investimentos.

Recently, Bradesco „resurrected“ Ágora to enter the fight with XP and the other open platforms. The brokerage firm of the second largest private bank went from 367,000 customers in December 2019 to 449,000 in June this year. In the second quarter, it had R$50.6 billion in custody and by 2021 the goal is to conquer 25% of the market, according to Estadão.

One month ago, Nubank announced the acquisition of Easynvest. In August, Neon bought Magliano. In June, Credit Suisse closed a deal to buy 35% of modalmais.

Guide, controlled by Fosun (also owner of Rio Bravo), would be for sale by the Chinese group, according to Valor Econômico earlier this year. According to a report published yesterday (7) by Broadcast, Estadão, PagSeguro would have its eye on the brokerage house.