Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry: 21-22 Sept

765 participants registered for Alfi conference

The Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry provides a virtual meeting place for fund distribution professionals. Library picture: Maison Moderne

The Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry provides a virtual meeting place for fund distribution professionals. Library picture: Maison Moderne

For this edition of the Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry’s annual Global Distribution Conference, “virtual” is still the order of the day. 765 participants from more than 40 countries are currently registered. The conference will be broadcast live via a live stream.

Alfi’s Global Distribution Conference is dedicated to the issues of global distribution, Luxembourg's main speciality. Organised in partnership with the US National Investment Company Services Association and the Hong Kong Investment Funds Association, it brings together the world's leading fund distributors and asset managers.

The lion's share of this year's agenda will focus on distribution issues and sustainable investment funds. This will be an opportunity to review the findings of the Sustainable Investment Fund Study 2021, commissioned by Alfi, which provides an overview of the current sustainable fund landscape in Europe. The study, presented earlier this summer, highlighted the fact that sustainable funds are the fastest growing segment of the European investment fund industry. In 2020, they captured 52% of net subscriptions and accounted for 11% of total fund assets domiciled on the old continent.

And in this segment, the grand duchy is doing very well: Luxembourg attracted 44% of net subscriptions in all European domiciles in 2020, with assets of €371bn at the end of 2020.

The detailed programme can be found here.

Waiting for a return to physical meetings

As was the case for the spring conference, the event will again be held virtually.

This is a formula that has advantages and disadvantages. For example, while the switch to all-digital allows for a follow-up of existing contacts, it poses problems for markets that need to be opened up, as Marc-André Bechet, deputy director general of Alfi, confided to Paperjam last spring. He reckons an existing network can be maintained electronically. And while it can be frustrating not to be able to see each other, it doesn't prevent us from working. "Working remotely allows for much more frequent, regular and much easier contact."

Digital technology encourages participation and allows us to reach a much wider audience who would not otherwise have come. This year's event will include participants from distant countries that do not normally travel in large numbers, such as India, Vietnam and Malaysia.

But for everything that concerns networking and business development, nothing can replace physical contact. So there is no question of abandoning on-site visits to renew contacts and have exchanges. The next hybrid conference, combining face-to-face and digital, will be the PE & RE (for private equity and real estate) conference scheduled for 30 November and 1 December.

This story was first published in French on Paperjam. It has been translated and edited for Delano.