Nordea uses robot to quadruple clients seeking advice

By BLOOMBERG

STOCKHOLM • Nordea Bank AB is targeting a fourfold increase in the number of clients receiving investment advice.

To achieve that goal, it’s using a robo-advisor.

Nora uses an algorithm to steer customers into portfolios that suit their risk and financial profiles.

It has been available to clients in Sweden since last Friday.

Nordea will offer Nora in Norway and Finland early next year.

Danish clients will have access before the summer, according the biggest Nordic bank.

Nordea is keen to brand itself as the Nordic bank with the boldest technology ambitions.

The lender said in October it will get rid of 6,000 employees, including 2,000 consultants, as part of a digital transformation management says will help it compete in an increasingly automated world.

CEO Casper von Koskull has even gone so far as to say that banks will only need about half as many employees 10 years from now as they have today.

“We still have the same ambition to help customers with physical advice as we did before,” Katja Bergqvist, the head of Nordea’s Investment Solutions & Advisory Centre, said in an interview.

“But with the current number of employees, we cannot reach as many as we would like. With Nora, we can reach many more customers.”

She says the bank expects to bring the number of clients getting investment advice to about two million per year in the next two to three years, compared to 500,000 now.

Nordea’s not the only big Nordic bank using robots to get more clients to invest.

Danske Bank A/S is trying to add customers with its asset management robot, June.

While Nordea is cutting thousands of jobs, Bergqvist says Nora won’t actually replace any human jobs.

Instead, the robo-advisor is intended to help the bank reach more customers without adding staff.