Here is your Riskalyze Fintech Five for May, a focused take on what we think are the recent top five stories in wealth management technology.
1. Onyx Launches
We’ll start today’s video with a huge congratulations to the Onyx Advisor Network, which officially launched this month.
A new support network and learning platform for underrepresented advisors launched by Dasarte Yarnway and Emlen Miles-Mattingly, there are two important trends to note here. One is the continued rise of professional networks for advisors who want to learn from each other.
Another is the effort to increase the diversity of the profession—people tend to build trust more rapidly with people who look and sound like themselves, and if we’re going to truly serve our diverse world, we need more advisors who look and sound like all of our potential clients.
2. Advisor Websites to Get Snappier
Snappy Kraken kicked off its first annual Jolt! Conference by announcing it was acquiring Advisor Websites, effectively doubling its team and client base.
As a board member at Snappy Kraken, it’s so exciting to see the powerful combination of marketing automation via email and social media; text messaging conversation with clients; and compliant website infrastructure. I couldn’t be more excited about the opportunities this deal creates for advisors to supercharge their marketing. Big congrats to Robert Sofia, Graham Thomas and both teams!
3. CAIS Building Advisor Group a Custom Alts Platform
In alternative news, CAIS continues to make waves as it extends its alternative investments platform into more high-powered partnerships. The firm announced it would be bringing a custom version of its platform to Advisor Group’s 10,000+ advisors.
If you’ve been a regular here at the Fintech Five, you know that the “alts” space is one that is heating up. Between iCapital, Gridline, First Trust and new startups I hear of all the time, giving advisors and their clients access to more than stocks and bonds is garnering a lot of attention.
4. Zoom Out, In-Person Conferences In
Are you Zoomed out? If so, you’re not alone—and the record-breaking attendance at spring advisor conferences is an indicator that while COVID-19 is here to stay, advisors are over staying inside because of it.
Joel Bruckenstein’s T3 event returned with about 1,000 attendees between the technology vendors and advisors in attendance—plus the release of the 2022 T3 Advisor Technology Survey results, which takes stock of market leaders across advisor tech categories.
It’s great to have you back, T3!
5. Fidelity to Add Crypto to Retirement Accounts
While it might not be great timing with most crypto markets down 50% or more in the last several weeks, Fidelity continued to assert itself at the forefront of blockchain innovation with the announcement they will support crypto in retirement accounts.
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (M-Mass.), who has never met a financial services announcement she hasn’t wanted to regulate, pounced on this immediately, firing off a strongly-worded letter to Fidelity questioning whether they were being prudent with this move.
It turns out Warren has a deep misunderstanding of all this, because Fidelity doesn’t typically serve as the fiduciary to these plans; the advisor on the plans will make the decision as to whether to incorporate the volatile asset class or not.
Rest assured, senator, we’ll still be here to make sure those advisors know it’s a Risk 99 move.