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August 2018

Ten years of Pictet-Digital

The tenth anniversary of the Pictet-Digital fund is a good occasion on which to look at how all kinds of everyday things move into the digital world; both in the past and in the future.

It’s quite likely you're reading this text on a smartphone. More than a billion smartphones are currently sold every year 1, and for most people the device has a fixed place in the trouser pocket or on the bedside table. The device has very quickly won a fixed place in our lives. After all, when the Pictet-Digital fund was launched, in the summer of 2008, there were just five million iPhones in use in the world 2
Revenue of the IOT market
revenues from the internet of things market

Source: Pictet Asset Management

The rise of the sharing economy
The digital revolution has made life easier in very many respects. This is only partly thanks to technological progress, as a result of which for example today’s devices are much faster and handier than the smartphones of ten years ago. The emergence of new business models plays a role that is at least as important. In this regard the sharing economy is the most striking example. Companies such as Airbnb and Uber have rewritten the rules of the traditional hotel industry and taxi sector. In the next few years this will probably happen with many other business sectors. 


The Internet of Things
Another development is that the digital world is constantly growing. Apart from computers and smartphones, more and more other appliances are being connected to the internet, such as thermostats, refrigerators and cars. The Internet of Things (IoT) can make many everyday tasks considerably easier. On cold days the car heating can be switched on from the breakfast table to avoid having to scrape the windscreen, and on hot days the roller shutters at home can be closed or the air conditioning turned on from the office.
Expected revenues through artificial intelligence
Displayed in US dollars
AI digital disruption thematics

Source: Pictet Asset Management

New reality
With augmented and virtual reality it becomes possible to look at the world in a completely different way. More and more applications are arriving to enhance the picture with digital elements on a smartphone or through headsets or special glasses. For now this technology commands attention mainly through games such as Pokémon Go and Wizards Unite, which is coming out later this year. But augmented and virtual reality are also already being used as auxiliary resources in certain operations. 
Blockchain is the much-talked-about technology behind Bitcoin, and is changing the financial sector. The success of blockchain technology stems mainly from the fact that transactions no longer require an independent third party such as a bank or a notary. What is more, blockchain makes fraud practically impossible.

Investment opportunities in the digital revolution

Within our Digital fund the focus is on developments that are characteristic of the changes that digital technology brings with it. Thus you invest through this fund in powerful developments such as the rise of the sharing economy, the Internet of Things, augmented and virtual reality, blockchain and artificial intelligence. We take positions in companies that we believe benefit from the continuing introduction of a new flow of interactive, promising, innovative software and business models.

The information and data presented in this material are for information purposes only and are not to be considered as an offer or solicitation to buy, sell or subscribe to any securities or financial instruments in any jurisdiction. Investment involves risk.  Past performance is not indicative of future results. Before making investment decision, investors should refer the offering documents.  The value and income of any of the securities or financial instruments mentioned in this document may fall as well as rise and, as a consequence, investors may receive back less than originally invested.  Information, opinions and/or estimates expressed in this material reflect a judgment at its original date of publication and are subject to change without notice. They are not prepared for any particular investment objectives, financial situation or requirements of any specific investor and do not constitute a representation that any investment strategy is suitable or appropriate for an investor’s individual circumstances or otherwise constitute a personal recommendation. If in doubt, please seek independent advice.

This material has not been reviewed by the Securities and Futures Commission or any other regulatory authority. The issuer of this material is Pictet Asset Management (Hong Kong) Limited.