June 02, 2020

China sees bright spot in AI-driven wealth management

PUBLISHED : November 16, 2018 - 16:37

UPDATED : November 16, 2018 - 16:37

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[THE INVESTOR] Artificial intelligence has become a buzzword in China in recent years, with the country heavily investing money and talent into the technology.

Among AI’s wide array of applications, fintech experts view the technology that gives human-like abilities to machines could have the greatest impact in changing China’s wealth management industry that is still at the nascent stage. 

Xiaolan Guan, executive president of Hundsun Technologies; Yihan Fang, CEO of Yirendai; Matthew Chen, Group CEO of Shenzhen Sunline Tech; and Theodora Lau, founder of Unconventional Ventures

“When it comes to wealth management, people in the US are used to allocating assets and use technology to make the process smarter. But in China, asset allocation is a new concept and people still need to learn, whether it is fixed income or real estate,” said Yihan Fang, CEO of Yirendai -- the first Chinese fintech firm to make a stock debut on New York Stock Exchange -- at Money 20/20 China on Nov. 16.

“We can use AI to educate and teach people to adopt this concept and accept new things quickly. Just like lending and payment, wealth management in China will use AI to become better and have good products like other developed countries.”

Fang stressed that AI-driven wealth management will help Chinese clients find financial products faster with a better match in the future.

“With AI, we can offer customized suggestions and advise mobile users to learn and choose a product with offline advisors. It will help consumers make better decisions,” she said.

The driving force for China’s wealth management is its extensive amount of data, the lifeblood of AI. Due to mass-adoption of mobile payments in the country -- where people use QR codes to pay for everything -- tech giants like Alibaba-owned Alipay and Tencent-owned WeChat Pay have piled up consumer data on what individuals are doing at a micro level.

“People no longer use credit cards in this country,” said Xiaolan Guan, executive president at Hundsun Technologies. “With Alipay and WeChat Pay, we have accumulated lots of data that could give a better understanding of individuals. Due to the vast amount of data available, institutions can identify right customers, making it easier to decide the product attribution aligned to the profile of customers.”

The Chinese chapter of Money 20/20, the world’s largest fintech and payment conference, runs through Nov. 16 at the Hangzhou International Expo Center.

By Ahn Sung-mi (

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