Following last week’s appointment of ex-asset manager Marc Bothwell to its product development team, risk management and valuations solution vendor Sophis has promoted another exec, Edgar Simiu, to strengthen its sales efforts in key European markets and new markets in North Africa. Simiu, who is currently a professional services manager for the vendor’s valuations solution, Value, will take on the role of sales manager for France, Belgium and the Netherlands and will also be responsible for targeting new markets in North Africa.
Simiu joined Sophis in 2004 and has worked in a variety of roles in the Continental Europe region including Value consultant, Value project coordinator and Value services manager. He has also acted as account manager for a number of the vendor’s key clients in the region including BNP Paribas Asset Management, AXA Investment Management and Jabre Capital. His key objectives in his new role will be to strengthen Sophis’ position in his region while exploring new business opportunities across North Africa.
Younes Guemouri, chief operating officer for Continental Europe at Sophis, explains that North Africa is a new regional focus for the vendor, but one he is confident that will reap rewards. “Recent experiences in Morocco for example, have demonstrated the professionalism of its financial institutions and people, and indicates that this market will be an exciting growth area for us in the near future,” he says.
Guemouri may be correct in his assumptions, as research conducted last year by Chartis Research indicates that emerging markets such as those in Asia, Africa and Latin America are displaying an interest in risk management systems in particular. Firms in these jurisdictions are seemingly hoping to leapfrog stages of development by adopting the latest risk management technology solutions.
Other risk management vendors such as FRSGlobal have also been targeting the African region. Last April, for example, FRSGlobal signed a partnership agreement with investment services and risk consultancy firm Kedari Capital to extend its reach into the Nigerian and West African markets.