ICICI Prudential Asset Management Co. Ltd has upgraded its information and communication mobile application, I-Pru Touch. The fund house has now launched transaction facilities for distributors via the app. While the latest update is meant for distributors, investor involvement is needed at every step to confirm and verify transactions. I-Pru Touch was launched around eight months ago with the objective of keeping communication and information lines to distributors active and up-to-date. Along with access to market news, views and product features, the app let’s you access financial planning tools such as calculators.
The obvious benefit is that it saves time for distributors as buying or selling can be done instantly. As an investor, you will have to sign a registration form with a one-time mandate. You can get this form from your financial adviser or distributor. This is needed to directly link your bank account inflows and outflows to transactions made using the app. It takes 15 days from submission of the one-time mandate form for you to be able to use the app. Once this is done, you have to inform your adviser and the transaction can get done almost immediately. Before any transaction made by the distributor using the app can go through, you will get a verification call from the fund house to ensure you understand and agree with the transaction details.
Since the transactions are directly linked to your bank account, there are no safety issues. You can use the app for financial transactions such as purchase, redemptions and switch.
The app doesn’t yet support financial transactions like systematic investment plans and non-financial transactions. So, you can’t change your address, add nominees, and so on. The app, naturally, allows you to take advantage of investing in ICICI Prudential AMC’s schemes. But this means that you will not be able to aggregate your transactions and the portfolio, which can include schemes from other asset managers as well. You can only access the app if you are an existing investor with the fund house and have a folio number. If you are a new investor, either to mutual funds or to ICICI Prudential AMC, you will not be able to avail the digital advantage.
MINT MONEY TAKE
The app and its transaction facilities are another step towards making mutual fund investments faster and more efficient. Computer Age Management Services Ltd (CAMS) also offers digital tools to make mutual fund transactions more efficient.
The CAMS Slate app, among other things, facilitates accepting and electronically submitting transactions for all AMCs registered with CAMS. While the I-Pru Touch is not competing with existing applications, it is a move towards digitization of mutual fund transactions. Its usefulness for retail investors will depend on how readily advisers embrace using it.