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The story behind Knox, the first custodian by and for wealth and asset managers.

KNOX no outline

Have we got news for you: a group of independent wealth- and asset managers have set up their own custodian institution in The Netherlands, and it’s called: Knox. Knox helps them to gain access to the necessary and obligatory services directly at institutional banks, meaning: wealth and asset managers can finally operate completely bank-independent. Read the official Knox press release here.

Knox is fully powered by Blanco technology. Our Banking Platform automates the full asset management cycle: everything a custodian needs when it comes to technology is provided by it. We’ve been working day and night to get Knox up and running. And we’re still constantly improving the platform. Besides providing the technology, Knox was also a very intensive organizational and regulatory challenge. Blanco CEO Joost Walgemoed says: It’s almost impossible to have idiosyncratic independent asset managers collaborate with each other. Nevertheless, we managed to start Knox together with them. We’re proud of that.”

The very first idea for Knox was born in the head of our own CEO Joost Walgemoed. I’ve spent my entire career working on what is so beautifully called financial inclusion’. As far as I’m concerned, this concept not only means that more and more financial products are accessible to ordinary consumers, but also that legally required, complex services should be directly available for purchase by independent wealth- and asset managers. This led to the idea of allowing wealth- and asset managers to set up their own custodian, through which they can collectively purchase the necessary services directly from institutional banks. That has now been introduced under the name Knox.

Although Knox was originally conceived by Blanco and uses Blanco’s technology, the brand-new custodian institution is now a completely independent entity, where the members — the wealth- and asset managers themselves — are the owners: Knox is really there for and by the wealth- and asset managers themselves. The management is in the hands of Pieter Aartsen, former director of Binck Bank. Klaartje de Beer has taken on the role of director of Legal & Compliance and Jaap Arkesteijn is director of Operations. Willem Meijer (i.a. director at the Enterprise Chamber of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal and a member of the Supervisory Board of Euroclear) is a member of the Supervisory Board of Knox. 

Pieter Aartsen on Knox: Thanks to Knox, the participating wealth- and asset managers are no longer dependent on banks that are also their competitors; Knox can select suitable banking partners itself; and because the services are purchased jointly via Knox, we create a purchasing advantage for our members. Knox enables wealth-and asset managers to operate completely independently, which is good for everyone, certainly also for the clients of the wealth-and asset manager.” Visit the Knox website.

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