Welcome to the February 2020 issue of the Latest News in Financial Advisor #FinTech – where we look at the big news, announcements, and underlying trends and developments that are emerging in the world of technology solutions for financial advisors and wealth management!
This month’s edition kicks off with the big announcement that Visa is acquiring Plaid for a whopping $5.3B (barely a year after Plaid itself acquired Quovo, a popular account aggregation solution for financial advisors), in a move that will help cement account aggregation as a standard fixture in the financial services landscape, and likely help to standardize (and reduce the frequency of breakages) account aggregation data gathering… though for the price that Visa paid to acquire Plaid, it doesn’t appear likely that serving financial advisors will be a priority, raising questions about what Visa’s commitment will be to Quovo in the long term and leaving the door open for Yodlee’s continued growth in the advisor community.
From there, the latest highlights also include a number of other interesting advisor technology announcements, including:
- Invesco’s Jemstep announces a major deal with Citigroup to power its new Citi Wealth Builder robo platform… to be funded exclusively with Invesco model portfolios comprised of Invesco ETFs
- Fidelity and Schwab announce a series of new enhancements to their own digital onboarding solutions and a long-term pledge to eliminate account application forms altogether
- WisdomTree announces that it intends to sell its robo-for-advisors platform AdvisorEngine for a significant loss that amounts to little more than what it originally paid for Junxure, raising questions of where Junxure itself will land when WisdomTree puts the company up for sale
- TA Associates announces that it is putting Orion Advisor Solutions up for sale for nearly $2B, in what may become the biggest yet private equity sale of an RIA technology solution
Read the analysis about these announcements in this month’s column and a discussion of more trends in advisor technology, including the growing intertwining between risk tolerance assessment tools and rebalancing software, Act Analytics launching a new ESG research platform for advisors looking to more easily analyze and then customize ESG portfolios for individual clients, Whealthcare’s founder splitting off from the company despite recent industry awards as advisor growth appears to have been lagging, and a growing level of integrations and adoption of cash management solutions for financial advisors as the pressure grows for advisors to show value for clients beyond just the portfolio itself.
And be certain to read to the end, where we have provided an update to our popular new “Financial Advisor FinTech Solutions Map” as well.
I hope you’re continuing to find this 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!