Citi has entered into an alliance with BlackRock, through its Aladdin business, to enhance the delivery of securities services to Citi’s clients who utilize the Aladdin end-to-end investment management platform. Connecting to Aladdin Provider, Citi said, will provide outsourced middle office services directly on a client’s instance of Aladdin for seamless integration with their front office, from trade confirmation to post settlement reconciliation.
Citi said the agreement expands its relationship with BlackRock, to whom it provides custody, accounting and/or fiduciary services for certain BlackRock funds domiciled in Hong Kong, Mexico and Colombia. In addition to funds managed by BlackRock, Citi also provides custody services to many asset managers on the Aladdin platform. “Our clients continually look to us to improve operational efficiencies, and BlackRock’s innovative platform will facilitate shared workflows and shared data sources that will reduce manual processes and operating costs while improving service outcomes for our mutual clients,” said Sanjiv Sawhney, Global Head of Custody and Fund Services at Citi.
According to analysts, joining the Aladdin Provider network will allow Citi to optimize its operating model to support not only BlackRock’s asset management business, but to provide an enhanced level of service to members of the broader Aladdin community. “This integrated environment will allow for greater automation, data symmetry and streamlined communications between Citi and members of the Aladdin community,” said Sudhir Nair, head of the Aladdin Business at BlackRock.
The connection to BlackRock’s Aladdin Provider network advances Citi’s strategy to leverage technology to achieve operational efficiencies across their custody and fund services platform. “Connecting Aladdin Provider to our data integration and delivery framework, Clarity, is a continuation of our commitment to deliver meaningful data and analytics that help clients reduce operating costs and extract actionable insights from their data,” said Fiona Horsewill, Head of Global Digital and Data Strategy for Citi Custody and Fund Services. “Citi’s Clarity platform facilitates comprehensive data integration and consumption with real-time APIs and visualizations,” she added.