The CBI industry is undergoing a metamorphosis, and must look to the younger generations and their digital-first view of the world of work.
The Covid-19 pandemic increased political fragmentation and created a shift towards ‘de-globalisation’ as governments became more insular, it also caused citizens to realise the value of global mobility and freedom that investment migration can offer — not only for the elite, but for hardworking entrepreneurs and those who have felt disenfranchised by their governments.
This is especially true for millennials and Gen Z — as these generations become the main drivers of economies, they have very different demands and expectations from those in power.
Millennials came of age in a time of shifting landscapes, tumultuous change and growing up in the information age; many see themselves as global citizens, rather than a citizen of one particular country, viewing the latter idea as being outdated.
As a cohort, millennials have already confronted several major crises — from the 2008 financial crisis to climate change and most recently Covid-19.
Growing up with uncertainty as a norm, this younger generation believes that the way they allocate their money can have an impact: 75 per cent of millennials believe their investments can influence change and 84 per cent believe it can help lift people out of poverty — this is according to a 2017 survey conducted on active individual American investors by Morgan Stanley’s Institute for Sustainable Investing.
Talk to wealth advisors, bankers, fund managers and others across finance, and it’s clear there is great concern about how to best appeal to young investors. For some, like wealth advisors, it is almost existential for their business because they know that as many as 70 per cent of women and millennial and Gen Z investors will likely fire their family’s advisors to manage their inheritance as the trillion-dollar wealth transfer gathers pace, as reported by Ernst & Young.
And that’s if young investors choose to employ a money manager at all. Young people do not have the same deep trust in institutions found in their parents’ generation, so they are more willing to embrace decentralised finance offerings, as proven by the 40 per cent of them who own crypto, according to 2021 data from The Motley Fool.
Additionally, this generation has grown up during a technological revolution with more access to world news and culture than ever before and this global access has created a passion and an interest in diversity and international experience.
It must also be noted that millennials and Gen Z have a more sustainable mindset than their predecessors. They are more conscious of their impact on the world and are investing more sustainably.
The ‘new’ CBI investor is more pragmatic — being more innovative, they are not looking for insurance policies to protect their wealth, but rather investment opportunities that will open up their businesses and services to new and bigger markets.
These new savvy investors understand that they are now operating in a highly competitive, diverse global landscape where the quickest and sharpest minds win the day. And to truly compete and take advantage of this new environment, many of their mobility choices are driven by opportunities and they are more amenable to moving to new jurisdictions that offer better life and financial prospects. Because they marry and have children much later in life, it is also easier for them to relocate to new countries.
The onset of social media has also meant that these new investors want to be spoken to in a more visual language – platforms like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn are the go-to for information. These future clients are much more likely to do their own research through the myriad of sources available online. And while most millennial investors already know a lot about CBI programmes — they usually have well laid out plans but still need, and often want to have a human touch while handling their investments.
The CBI industry is undergoing a metamorphosis on many different fronts and the profile of the new CBI investor is increasingly mirroring this. It is important to remember that all people are fundamentally looking for a better life and therein lies the allure of second citizenship: the ability to master your own destiny.