China Life Asset Management has selected Charles River Investment Management System, a financial software and services provider, to automate its investment operations across all asset classes. The deal allows China Life to benefit from portfolio management, order management and real-time pre-trade compliance testing and monitoring capabilities on a single integrated platform, made available in a fully localised Chinese version.

Zhang Zengming, executive vice-president at China Life, says the automation allows the firm to react quickly to the developments in China's exceptionally fast-paced financial market. The automation is in fact "critical" to China Life's growth strategy, he says.

China Life AM's business covers fixed income investments, equity investments, direct investments and international operations. It is the largest institutional investor in the domestic capital market and an important participant in the money markets.

"We now have comprehensive portfolio management, and pre- and post-trade compliance capabilities that allow us to adhere easily to client mandates for our domestic Chinese business," says Zhang.

Cameron Field, managing director for Asia-Pacific at Charles River Development, says China Life is its first domestic asset management client on the mainland. The service provider is targeting other institutional investors in that market.

 "As China rapidly deregulates its capital markets system, we are seeing increased demand by Chinese asset managers for a comprehensive front- to middle-office platform that can manage complex investment strategies as well as domestic products," Field says.

Charles River is present in 14 countries in Asia-Pacific, with 50 specialists servicing the region.