Welcome to the September issue of the latest news in Financial Advisor #FinTech – where we look at the big news announcements, and the underlying trends and developments that are emerging, in the world of technology solutions for financial advisors.
This month’s edition kicks off with the launch of two new categories of financial advisor technology – AdvicePay, a payment processor to facilitate monthly, quarterly, or annual retainer billing directly from a client’s credit card or bank account (without running afoul of RIA custody rules!), along with Snappy Kraken, a comprehensive automated digital marketing platform for advisors, both premiering at the #XYPN16 #FinTech competition in September.
Also in the news over the past month is: McKinsey Consulting buys PriceMetrix, a financial advisor data platform to do benchmarking of advisor fees (necessary to determine “reasonable compensation” in the future under DoL fiduciary!); the launch of a new risk tolerance profiling system called TrueProfile, and the news that the Financial Planning Association is participating in the venture (putting it in competition with companies like Riskalyze and FinaMetrica, which also sponsor FPA events!); RIA In A Box wins its second consecutive “Best In Show” award at the Fuse Orion hackathon (who says compliance tech solutions aren’t exciting!?); a new hybrid Robo/TAMP solution named “RobustWealth” launches, aiming to compete with alternatives like Betterment for Advisors but with the capabilities of a full-fledged TAMP; Betterment rolls out a new “Tax Coordinated Portfolio” service, threatening to commoditize Asset Location in the same way it has with Tax-Loss Harvesting; the Balance Financial PFM solution for advisors shuts down (but may live on as a proprietary HD Vest solution); transactional “robo” platforms Motif and Robinhood pivot to an AUM-like fee-based wrap account subscription model, but at a cost that could be drastically higher than other robo-advisors for small Millennial accounts; and a new product called “Screenmeet” launches for advisors, aiming to compete with (more expensive and complex) alternatives like GoToMeeting and WebEx for advisors who just want to do a simple screen-share of a document while speaking to a client on the phone.
I hope you’re continuing to find this new column on financial advisor technology to be helpful! Please share your comments at the end and let me know what you think!
*And for #AdvisorTech companies who want to submit their tech announcements for consideration in future issues, please submit to TechNews@kitces.com!