KS plans paperless e-account opening

KS plans paperless e-account opening

Kasikorn Securities (KS) is set to unleash its online trading business by launching an e-account opening service, letting customers open cash balance accounts without showing paper documents.

The company has partnered with Settrade, a stock trading platform under the Stock Exchange of Thailand, to develop the service.

The service only requires four image files: an ID card photo, a signature photo, a savings account bank book photo and a selfie photo with the ID card.

Applicants can use any electronic device that has an embedded camera.

KS managing director Padermpob Songkroh said the company targets 3,000-5,000 new securities trading accounts from the e-account channel, expecting to boost new account openings by 20-25% a year.

KS's trading accounts total 130,000, logging new account openings of 15,000-18,000 in the first nine months of 2018.

"Online trading accounts make up 82.5% of the total active customers, with 80,892 accounts, and represent 69% of trading volume," Mr Padermpob said. "This service aims to penetrate the millennial generation, as they are familiar with electronic devices."

But customers applying for e-account opening will only be allowed to open cash balance accounts, a prepaid type of trading account in which customers are required to put money before trading and the trade amount is based on the prepaid amount, Mr Padermpob said.

Customers must submit additional paper-based documents if they want to trade using a cash account, whereby a securities company provides a trade limit and payment is deducted from customers' deposit accounts based on the T+2 clearing and settlement process.

KS's online trading volume has climbed to 69% of total volume over a two-year period, up from 65% registered in 2016.

Online trading in Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea represent 90% of retail trading volume, according to KS.

Competition in online trading in Thailand is not intense and there is huge potential for further growth, Mr Padermpob said.

Besides the e-account opening service, KS plans to increase the quality of investment consultants to serve affluent and private banking customers, which make up 31% of the company's total securities trade.

Thanatorn Chaimanee, an executive in the electronics department at KS, said the company launched its KS Super Stock app in 2013. The stock-screening tool has received more than 180,000 downloads.

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