Case study

The Customer

A large Japanese bank embarked on an expansion strategy for its brokerage business. As s corner stone of this strategy, the customer wanted to establish pan- Asian research coverage out of Hong Kong in a very short time frame.

The Challenge

To support the expansion of its research operations across Asia, the customer sought a scalable research production platform featuring:

Industry-specific modelling

  • Automatic report generation, including disclaimers and disclosures
  • Integration of Bloomberg date feeds
  • Flexible data extraction and automatic formatting of charts and tables in the company’s house style
  • A parallel workflow with configurable approvals, integrated compliance checks and automated PDF-ing of reports
  • Data capture in a central database capable of driving websites and other applications
  • Collaboration across multiple locations in multiple languages In-house configuration, e.g. of models, reports templates, users and coverage

The solution has to be implemented to a strict timetable to match the arrival of a new team od analysts.

The Solution

The customer found in EFA a proven, out-of-the box solution matching its requirements to a tee.

Project Timeline

  • 25 March Project Initiation
  • 16 April Database configured and 1st model delivered
  • 27 April Commencement of training
  • 30 April Report designs finalised
  • 7 May Second model approved
  • 17 May Projected completed, including UAT

As part of the implementation Industrial and Banking models were developed, to which Consumer and Internet models were subsequently added. Within a few months of operation, the customer’s EFA administrators acquired sufficient familiarity with the system to develop their own model extensions in-house.

The customer initially contracted for a Company and Sector report template, which in-house administrators are now able to amend themselves.

Data exhibits are automatically populated with current date from the EFA database, formatted in the customer’s house style and inserted, along with appropriate disclaimers and disclosure, when a report is generated. Bloomberg date is used for price charts and to calculate valuation ratios and perform currency conversion on the fly.

A parallel EFA Workflow was configured, offering editors, production staff and compliance the flexibility to review reports in any order, which avoids bottlenecks in the publication process. The workflow can easily be extended for additional roles, e.g. translators or supervisory analysts (SA) and staff wearing multiple hats (e.g. an editor who is also an SA) need only provides a single sign-off.

Reports are PDF-ed automatically as part of the publication process and stored in a fully searchable document library. When a report is published, the associated data is simultaneously made public in the EFA database, ensuring clients receive equal access, irrespective of the channel through which research and data are delivered.

The EFA Query Tool lets analysts and sales people extract data from the data base, shortening response time for client requests. Queries can be saved, meaning recurring custom exhibits, i.e. analysts’ preferred tables and charts, can be generated automatically at the click of the button. EFA Functions offer an alternative means of extracting data from the EFA database directly into Excel workbooks. And in conjunction with EFA’s comprehensive API, the EFA database can drive websites and other applications, such as iPhone or Blackberry apps.

EFA includes language handling out of the box and EFA implementations are currently operational in Arabic, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Korea, Vietnamese and English.

EFA is fully configurable through the administrator user interface, avoiding any 3rd party dependency for everyday tasks, such as changing models, reconfiguring report templates and updating user profiles or privileges.

The Result

Project implementation was completed seven weeks after project initiation. Within a few months of going live using EFA, the customer expanded its research team fivefold and its companies under coverage tenfold.

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