Société Générale has taken the title again this year and has further expanded its already impressive product offering. With the SGI (Société Générale Index) suite offering more than 300 indices, including alpha, beta, European, global wealth, private equity and sector specific index-linked products, the bank’s next move has been to coordinate with another financial institution to create a bespoke offering.Société Générale has created, in partnership with DBS Wealth Management, an index called “DBS Asian Winners”. The index tracks the performance of an underlying basket of stocks selected by DBS’s chief investment officer, Lim Say Boon, and his team. An excellent example of Société Générale’s innovation, DBS customers have exclusive access to DBS Asian Winners in the form of a structured note issued by Société Générale. The product grants clients access to bite-size chunks of a pool of equities, which are dynamically managed and rebalanced according to the DBS CIO’s investment views. This synthesis of the two banks’ strengths – Lim’s impressive financial markets experience and stock-picking ability and Société Générale’s innovative approach to structured products – is a further example of Société Générale’s ability to stay one step ahead of the game.DBS Asian Winners, with its highly transparent underlying constituents, also serves to allay clients’ prejudices against opaque “black box” products, a more prevalent issue of recent times.
Société Générale’s Enhanced Collar strategies maintain their popularity with clients, as do other new products, such as the Bear Bond Index, which allows clients to hedge against rising interest rates. Société Générale has demonstrated not only the strength and breadth of its existing offering but it has, once again, shown its ability to innovate, all the while creating easy to understand products based on its clients’ specific needs. These qualities contribute to Société Générale’s emergence as the clear winner of the 2014 Most Innovative Provider of Index-linked Structured Products.