So, we have this new company called Sharesies which is trying to make it easier for people to invest in the sharemarket. They’re basically re-selling Smartshares EFT’s by making a nicer looking UI and trying to simplify the options (risk as an “out of 10” score) etc…

I signed up for the beta and got $20 “free” credit (though there’s a yearly $30 for signing up) and got started. Currently there’s only six options to buy (4 “balanced”, one “conservative” and one “growth”):

Screenshot showing available options to buy
Screenshot showing available options to buy

List of options currently available, mix of NZ, Aus and US products

This was a bit disappointing as Smartshares offers about 22 different products, but I assume that this is just due to Sharesies being in “beta” and that more will be added as time goes on and more users join.

The user interface is nice and simple to use and was obviously designed for mobile phones. This is kind of ironic in a way since topping up your wallet basically requires a wait (nightly batch processing is still alive and well in NZ’s banking industry) as well as actually placing a “buy” order can take up to two days to fulfill.

How/why a real-time interface is needed when you’re dealing with those kinds of delays/processes is beyond me. The only thing I can think of is that Sharesies is hoping to gain enough users to spur the finance/banking industries into developing some “real time” capabilities and not relying so much on batch processing running on ancient mainframes. I wish them the best of luck 🙂

Overall a great idea, well executed (especially considering it’s in beta) and I hope Sharsies take off and get more people to invest in anything other than housing.

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