In a Fairfax interview just before Christmas BetaShares co-founder Alex Vynokur was quoted as saying:

“Finance has not had its Spotify moment yet.

Industries like media and telecommunications have gone through years of innovation and disruption that have improved outcomes for consumers but made incumbents uncomfortable.

I think the financial services sector is on the cusp of significant disruption.”

2014 marks the year in which digital disruption comes to the funds management industry, and Mclowd has a central role to play in that process.

An early example of this can now be found in the market for SMSF actuarial certificates, where Mclowd is partnering with new entrants to enable significant deflation against incumbent pricing.

The Future of Work

In his recent paper on The Future of Work Suncorp Chairman Ziggy Switkowski made the following prediction:

“In the near future ubiquitous broadband, inexpensive computing power, smart algorithms, cheap data storage and 24/7 services provided by the crowd might bypass established financial institutions and enable a world of one-to-one transactions. Imagine a sort of Wikipedia model for corporate processes where the company role is merely a curatorial one.

Got a technical issue? Invite the crowd to solve it or share their experiences. Need a breakthrough in R&D? Define the problem on the net and invite solutions in return for peer recognition or a small prize. Need start-up funding for an original idea? Ask online for individual contributions in return for preferred access to the innovative product once produced.

This web-enabled, crowd-sourcing model leverages low-cost access to discretionary effort from the global online community. It hints at virtual companies rather than those hamstrung by depreciating assets, sales and service teams, and real estate. Boards of management might perform curatorial roles of communities within the crowd that contribute to elements of the supply chain in a commercial ecosystem.”

The Role of Mclowd

Whether it is lower cost actuarial certificates or free SMSF accounting software, these quotes reflect the role that Mclowd has to play in terms of digital disruption: leveraging the “web-enabled, crowd-sourcing” model foreshadowed by Switkowski to improve net returns for investors and make life uncomfortable for incumbents.