02 December 2022 • Fund
When Centralis decided to offer fund services, it wanted to do it right. After obtaining a central administration license in 2016, the company now offers a full range of services powered by top-of-the-line software and IT infrastructure that match its agility, drive, and focus on clients. We are very proud to have completed the SOC 1® examination, crowning years of hard work. By achieving this milestone in our company, we are committed to secure internal controls and improve the fund solutions offered to our clients.
Founded in 2006, Luxembourg-based Centralis, a Professional of the Finance Sector (PFS), has grown into an international top-tier provider of outsourced corporate services. Since 2016, it has also offered fund services, an expansion that was the obvious next step in giving clients access to a larger toolbox and an expanded suite of services. The move coincided with the introduction of RAIF products, which gave a powerful boost to the fund industry, resulting in less red tape and faster time to market, something Centralis definitely wanted to offer clients. The expansion was also prompted by the clients themselves who were looking for fund administration services and wanted to stay with a service provider they knew and trusted.
The same year it obtained the license, Centralis began investing heavily in IT infrastructure to provide the most streamlined, integrated, and comprehensive range of fund services available. At the center of this new and improved infrastructure was eFront, which is market-leading software and helps to implement end-to-end solutions that is fit for purpose.
“We had the advantage of being free in the design process and being able to set up workflows the way we wanted. The result is wonderfully practical: little room for error and adapted to customer’s needs. With eFront, our clients have a powerful dashboard that is easy to use, and for our staff, eFront allows them to provide greatly enhanced services and information much more easily.” -Bruno Stockemer, Head of Business Development - Luxembourg, Centralis Group.
The core advantage of eFront is that it integrates fund accounting with transfer agency functions, while other software treats these functions separately and joins them together at a later stage. Another great advantage is the reporting capability which is able to generate complex statistical reports about a fund’s investments as well as the fund’s capital position.
“The tool is extremely data-centric and allow us to support the organization’s reporting and elaboration in business strategies. It collects a variety of information about the investments of the fund, data that can be compiled, filtered, and viewed in different ways, depending on what the client wants.” -Kate Agu.
For clients, these features are highly valued, allowing them to closely monitor the performance of their investments. Another added value is that a client, a fund manager, for example, can impress his or her own clients and investors with state-of-the-art, data-rich reporting packages.
By offering a full set of services, we can serve clients from the bottom to the top, meaning the underlying SPVs and the funds above those.
Kate Agu, Head of Fund Services, Centralis Group
The key to Centralis’s steady growth goes beyond its service offerings, IT infrastructure, and its management that is highly ambitious yet careful to grow at a manageable pace. That key is its people, many of whom have been with the company from the beginning. In fact, very low turnover is one of the company’s sources of pride, and it prioritizes keeping staff happy and engaged.
“We really listen to our employees, provide them with career opportunities, involve them in process developments and allow them to participate in the range of services from start to finish. This way, everyone can develop, learn, and of course, enjoy their work.” –Kate Agu.
Also, at the heart of Centralis’s success is that clients generally have a single point of contact, often someone who has been with the company for a long time, and who will remain with the client for their entire journey. This way, Ms Agu says, client relationships remain comfortable, easy, and bound by trust. On top of this, the Centralis team is always eager to help with matters not strictly related to fund administration, guiding clients to trustworthy legal and banking services, as clients are often based elsewhere and have minimal experience with Luxembourg and European regulations and obligations.
“Many of our clients are well-established and experienced, but we also have fresh starters who are launching their first funds, and this is our message to them: it might look a little overwhelming, but don’t worry, we are here to help you all along the way so that you can focus on what is important to you, namely, investments, fundraising, and your relationship with your investors.” -Sébastien François, Group Head of Corporate Services, Centralis Group