Meet the Team - Dan Bowering, Acting Head of Compliance, AmiPRO
The success of AmiPRO relies on the diverse experience provided by our growing team of experts. We’re excited to share their insights with you and how their experience contributes to the growth and innovation at AmiPRO – setting new standards in Fintech and Digital Asset investing.
Dan Bowering brings over 30 years of experience in financial services. During that time, he has held Chief Compliance Officer roles at some of Canada’s leading financial services firms. He has also been a member serving on industry committees such as the CCLS Executive Committee and IIROC’s Ontario District Council. Dan is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and is a Professor and guest lecturer at Seneca College in their business program. He currently runs a consulting firm, DDB Compliance Services.
What attracted you to join AmiPRO’s team?
As a compliance professional, I trust my intuition about people and opportunities. There was no doubt that AmiPRO’s founders, Hashim andSarah, gave me a ‘good vibe’ when they approached me with the opportunity to join their team. Investing in Digital Assets is something that all investment dealerships, and eventually banks, will have to get into if they are going to be offering full service. If you want to be at the forefront for investing in this new class of asset, the time is now.
What do you feel is the biggest hurdle for investment firms when investing in Digital Assets?
We know what stocks, mutual funds and currencies are along with how to regulate them. Currently, there is a lack of a regulatory framework for Digital Assets. Is it a currency?Security? Hybrid? Most currencies are used as a hedge and provide safety to investment portfolios. Crypto is different. The volatility of this asset class causes concern. We need to adopt a regulatory framework so we know how to address it. However, few firms want to be first to invest in Digital Assets due to the lack of regulatory framework.
Is the perceived risk in investing in Digital Assets real?
Volatility, liquidity and quality issues add to the perceived risk. There are so many variables to consider when investing in Digital Assets. Consider that not all Bitcoin is created equal or the quality of electronic wallets. This creates the view that these assets are too risky. But consider that most dealerships allow investing into penny stocks which are equally risky. The difference is that these penny stocks are ‘the devil we know’. Some risks are real while others are perceptual. AmiPRO can’t de-risk the asset at this time, but they can de-risk the process which is a positive step forward.
Do we need to be concerned about the history and origins of cryptocurrencies?
The origins of digital currencies date back to the 1990s. At that time, new digital currencies had no central server and tangible assets held in reserve or central organization in power that could properly control them. This resulted in digital currencies becoming favoured worldwide by extortionists in money laundering and Ponzi schemes. Until Bitcoin was first introduced in 2009, digital currencies were not providing a secure and transparent way to digitally track the ownership of assets. Now draw a parallel to other businesses that are successful today but were founded under darker circumstances. Look at Seagram's, a company know for dealing with bootleggers during the prohibition era in the US. You simply can’t judge something based on its history.
WithBitcoin, the history is still fresh in our minds. But consider that fraud exists with conventional securities. Remember Bre-X, a Canadian gold stock recommended by analysts in the 1990s that became the darling of investors? Bre-X Minerals collapsed in 1997 after the gold samples were found to be a fraud. What this tells us is that you have to look at an investment opportunity as it presents itself today.
How do today’s regulators in Canada view Digital Asset investing?
Bricks and mortar companies that produce goods and services are something we know. It’s the Warren Buffet approach to investing. Invest in things you consume and know such as cars, oil and ketchup. That’s why regulators perceive Digital Asset investing as risky. However, Digital Assets today are based on blockchain cryptography which chains together digital signatures of asset transfers, peer-to-peer networking and decentralization. Today, cryptocurrencies can allow electronic money systems to be decentralized.
The Canadian economy is manufacturing and resource-based. We are now moving towards an information-based economy. Peoples’ livelihoods are based more on information and crypto assets are a manifestation of this movement. It’s time to change our perceptions.
How should Wealth ManagementAdvisors and their firms approach Digital Asset investing?
What is most important is to know your client and your product. This asset class is outperforming every other class. So don’t we owe it to our clients to give them access to this class with the highest quality? It’s a natural fit within the financial services area.
We will be wrapping policies and procedures at AmiPRO for Digital Assets similarly to what has been done for other investments. We will embark on completing the due diligence required so it is a suitable platform for clients to invest in. Set parameters for how much clients can buy. Create a diverse portfolio whereDigital Asset investing fits into a framework. Wealth management advisors need to know the product and stay up on how it is evolving.
I believe IIROC’s take on Digital Asset investing is that this class of investment is going to happen. A prudent approach would be to dip your toe in before jumping into this asset class. They will no doubt develop regulations and guidelines while letting the market drive demand. It’s a strong signal that now is the time for firms to get involved.
What are you waiting for? Key indicators are normalizing this asset class. Look at the recent announcements from PayPay and Wealth Simple. Regulators are making it easier to invest in Digital Assets. Digital Assets have been around for over ten years and are performing. Wealth management firms can’t wait any longer. Be a leader. Be the one to lead and earn a competitive advantage. Quite simply, it’s a disservice to not get involved.
Why did you join AmiPRO’s team?
I would not be involved if I personally did not believe in Digital Asset investing. DigitalAssets are a valued asset class that comes with risk. But, I believe that there is risk in every investment. There isn’t a ‘sure thing’. Digital asset investing may not be for everybody but I believe that AmiPRO is on the forefront of something truly revolutionary. Your clients are going to invest inDigital Assets with or without you. Retain your advisor role by being there to not only advise them on this investment class but provide them with a process that is de-risked. AmiPRO will provide the platform, consulting services and technology to make this possible.
To meet the rest of our team, click here: About Us.