Tag Archives: Black Diamond Performance Reporting

FPPad Bits and Bytes for September 14

Here are this week’s stories of interest:

New Apps for the Mobile Financial Adviser from The Wall Street Journal

[Clearly, mobile devices and their software apps are changing the way you do business. Expect even more functionality and enhanced security, such as facial recognition or biometrics, for mobile devices in the coming years.] Smart gadgets packed with apps are changing the way financial advisers do business and relate to their clients. As more advisers snap up mobile devices like iPads, the investment firms they work with are offering up apps that let them do their jobs from a small screen.

Money management, Silicon Valley-style from Forbes

[Forbes managed to extract info from start-up Addepar that both RIABiz and I failed to get. Now we know Addepar charges 5 basis points on AUM, generates about $25 million in revenue, has 75 “lean” employees, and a sales force with connections to the ultra high net worth segment of the wealth management market.] Having made a small fortune in his twenties, Joe Lonsdale has set his sights on a new challenge: designing software for the ultrawealthy.

Personal Capital Unveils its Professionally Managed 401(k) from Finovate.com

[So who out there has 401(k) fee evaluator tools? Brightscope and FutureAdvisor do, and they’ve been mentioned here before. Now start-up RIA Personal Capital has one, too. Add this to their free mobile app, free peer-to-peer payment support, and free stock option analyzer, and you’ve got a robust offering of pipeline-filling marketing tools. Oh, and they now are selling “America’s BEST 401k” plan at http://www.personalcapital401k.com/ with management fees around 50 basis points.] Personal Capital will be demoing its free 401(k) fee calculator, which enables users to determine how much their 401(k) costs and what long-term fees they can expect to pay over time. The calculator has the potential to save investors hundreds of thousands of dollars over a lifetime.

Advent Adds Alternative Investments Solution to Black Diamond Platform from MarketWatch.com

[Alternative investments are gaining adoption among financial advisers. The challenge with them, though, is getting updated data populated in a portfolio management system like PortfolioCenter, AssetBook, and in this case, Advent. From the press release, it sounds like advisers have a way to perform bulk updates to alternative assets in Advent’s Black Diamond platform. If there were 30 hours in a day, I’d have specifics for you on how that actually takes place.] Advent Software, Inc., a leading provider of software and services for the global investment management industry, today announced the launch of an alternative investments solution within the Black Diamond platform. The new functionality enables advisors and wealth managers to manage and report the details of their alternative investment holdings down to the transaction level allowing them to provide a more complete financial picture to their clients.

MarketCounsel Sells MailBanc Messaging Unit to Global Relay from AdvisorOne

[MarketCounsel’s MailBanc email archiving service was one I covered last year in a review of archiving providers for Morningstar (see Avoid E-mail Audit Headaches). Thursday MarketCounsel said it sold MailBanc to archive provider Global Relay, who by no coincidence, was also featured in the same Morningstar column. When MailBanc was launched, advisers had few choices for email archiving. Today, there are many more options. As founder Brian Hamburger said, “The industry has now matured to a point where we can step aside and continue our focus on RIAs.”] “We have sold our MailBanc messaging compliance service to Global Relay,” Hamburger said, offering no details of the deal.

Junxure Achieves Company Milestone, Surpasses 10,000 Active Users from eReleases.com

[The number-two CRM (according to most financial advisor surveys, and excluding Microsoft Outlook!), now has over 10,000 users on its platform. This is a good milestone for a niche product, but the company faces an uphill battle to close the gap with leading CRM provider Redtail Technologies, which at last report had over 43,000 users.] Junxure, an industry-leading CRM practice improvement firm that integrates technology, consulting, and training, today announced that it surpassed 10,000 active users on its Junxure CRM as of July 2012.

FPPad Bits and Bytes for June 22

Woah, who turned on the firehose of releases this week? Maybe everyone wants to get all their news out to the world before taking off for summer vacations.

So I don’t interfere with your vacation plans, let’s move right into week’s stories of interest:

Schwab Performance Technologies Announces Development of Hosted Version of PortfolioCenter from MarketWire

[My Twitter followers found out Monday morning of Schwab’s latest plans to offer a hosted version of PortfolioCenter to advisers. Getting portfolio management software off of your local server is one of the last hurdles to cross in transitioning your business into one that can operate completely in the cloud.] Schwab Performance Technologies® (SPT), a subsidiary of The Charles Schwab Corporation and a leading provider of technology solutions for independent investment advisors, announced today that the company is building a hosted version of its flagship portfolio management software for independent investment advisors.

Schwab Announces Availability of 28 New Workflows for Independent Investment Advisors from MarketWire

[My vision for workflows is an online exchange advisers can upload and download workflow scripts for specific CRMs. Well, that assumes CRMs can import and export workflow scripts, which most can’t do, not even Salesforce, if I remember correctly. Until then, advisers will have to settle for “pseudo-code,” i.e. a high-level description, of what steps to follow in a workflow, delivered in a PDF or Word document. And that’s exactly what Schwab Intelligent Technologies is delivering.] In order to help advisors gain greater efficiency in their business practices, Charles Schwab announced today that a full library of 28 universal workflows are now available in the Schwab OpenView Workflow Library(TM) (Workflow Library) through Schwab Intelligent Technologies.

Cloud version of Junxure on the way from InvestmentNews

[Junxure Essentials is coming, well, soon, and we don’t yet know how much it will cost. Last year, August 24, 2011 to be exact, I relayed the company’s plans to release a cloud-based version of Junxure in Q4 2012. According to CRM Software’s Greg Friedman, now plans are to launch a beta version in the fall with general availability in 2013. Building this is not easy, and Junxure’s only going to get one chance, in my opinion, to get this right. Oh, and if you made it this far, Junxure posted a sneak peek of Joel Bruckenstein’s review from the Technology Tools for Today newsletter.] Junxure, a CRM application popular among registered investment advisers, is heading to the clouds.

Smarsh Acquires AdvisorSquare from Symantec from MarketWatch

[If you archive websites (see Smarsh releases Web Archiving, an automated solution to archive adviser websites), you might as well support the creation of them in the first place. Here Smarsh announces the acquisition of AdvisorSquare and their website support for “thousands of investment professionals nationwide.” I stopped recommending AdvisorSquare to my clients back in 2009. Will Smarsh’s investment reverse my opinion of their product and service?] Smarsh(R), the managed service leader in secure, innovative and reliable email archiving and compliance solutions, today announced the acquisition of AdvisorSquare from Symantec.

Junxure Launches Blog for Financial Industry from PRNewswire

[Junxure, a top-three CRM in use by advisers, now has a public blog. I contacted Junxure president Greg Friedman and asked that he set up an RSS feed with Feedburner to offer a few more flexible options for visitors to subscribe.] Junxure, an industry-leading CRM practice improvement firm that integrates technology, consulting, and training, has launched its Company blog at www.junxure.com/blog. The new Junxure blog will primarily focus on topics related to the financial industry, from technology trends to industry best practices. In addition, the Junxure blog will report important news and updates about its products and services.

 AssetBook and BlazePortfolio Announce Strategic Partnership to Deliver End-to-End Back Office Solution for Investment Advisors from BlazePortfolio

[Managing portfolios for your clients means more than just downloading and reconciling account positions. You also need a tool that scales your ability to place trades. Here’s a good development between trade order management provider BlazePortfolio and  online portfolio service bureau Assetbook (see AssetBook CEO Rob Major discusses advantages of hiring an outsourced portfolio service bureau.] BlazePortfolio Systems  and AssetBook today announced an integration partnership between software platforms which would provide AssetBook users access to BlazePortfolio’s real-time trade order management system, Atom Align.  The combined offering will provide enhanced flexibility for registered investment advisors who are seeking a best of breed approach to manage their portfolio management systems.

YouTube Integration Reflects Growing Use of Video as Social Tool for Business from Arkovi.com

[You no doubt have noticed the addition of video content here at FPPad. You’re likely considering making videos of your own (if not already) to feature your business. But any video you post is marketing material, and is therefore subject to the same capture and archive requirements in FINRA and SEC regulations. So how do you archive videos you post to popular hosting sites like YouTube? One option is Arkovi’s extended solution.]  Arkovi announced today at the Morningstar Investment Conference a new integration with YouTube, continuing a series of major releases on its social media archiving, compliance and monitoring platform. The YouTube integration includes a number of key features including publishing, compliance and supervision, reporting and search features.

Black Diamond’s Clientele Swells After Advent Merger from WealthManagement.com

[A little more than a year after being acquired by Advent for $73 million, Black Diamond continues its healthy growth. What I’d like to know from you is what has (or has not) changed with respect to the customer service you receive.] Not every advisor was pleased in May 2011 when Advent Software announced it was buying its smaller, younger rival, Black Diamond Performance Reporting.

See, I told you there were a ton of new updates this week!

Kitces: Eleven blogs for all financial advisers to follow from InvestmentNews

[It’s a privilege to have FPPad included among excellent blogs you should follow. I hope you continue to enjoy the Video Spotlight and Bits & Bytes content produced for you.] While there are many lists of blogs out there, financial planning’s own social media “power tweeter” Michael Kitces, partner and director of research for Pinnacle Advisory Group and publisher of The Kitces Report and his own blog, Nerd’s Eye View, maintains a list of blogs specifically relevant for financial advisors.

FPPad Bits and Bytes for June 8

So, have you reset your LinkedIn password yet?

With Boston on my schedule Monday through Wednesday (and some new video filmed that is coming soon), followed by Atlanta on Thursday and Friday, you can understand how frequent posts just aren’t high on my priority list. Nevertheless, I’m devoted to giving you the BEST (not simply all) technology stories from around the web this week.

Here are this week’s stories of interest:

Cabinet NG Launches CNG-SHARE, Secure File Sharing Portal from Yahoo! Finance

[See, enterprise and business document management providers won’t stand still while consumer services like Dropbox race ahead. Here, Cabinet NG is extending its functionality by offering a portal to share documents in the CNG repository with individuals outside of the firm (e.g. your clients). The portal can be white labeled for your firm, too. Though not as slick as Dropbox’s desktop sync, it’s a step in the right direction.]  Cabinet NG (CNG), provider of electronic document management and workflow management software, today announced the availability of the industry’s first fully integrated document management, cloud-based file sharing, and workflow solution.

Can Future Advisor be the self-driving car for financial advice? from O’Reilly Radar

[Give FutureAdvisor credit: I filmed Bo Lu last month at FinovateSpring 2012, and in the last week, they received this feature in O’Reilly and one in the Wall St. Journal. Advisers, you need to pay attention to what these new web apps are doing for clients that you’re turning away because of low assets.]  Future Advisor launched in 2010 with the goal of providing better financial advice through the Internet using data and algorithms. They’re competing against startups like Wealthfront and Betterment, among others.

Schwab shifts its strategy on its massive Intelligent Integration from RIABiz.com

[I was on Schwab’s press call 30 minutes after delivering a presentation in Boston. Credit to Brooke for turning this article around quickly, which captured much of the essence of the call, while I was in holding patterns over a stormy DFW airport.] Schwab Advisor Services has shifted strategies on its giant Intelligent Integration initiative, and rather than picking the best of breed in technology categories, the firm is looking to select the industry’s top platforms.

Black Diamond is setting its sights on smaller advisors and other things I learned over breakfast with Reed Colley from RIABiz.com

[Another great segment from Brooke on Black Diamond’s first year under the umbrella of Advent (see Advent Purchases Black Diamond Performance Reporting for Approximately $73 Million). But what isn’t discussed is what Black Diamond is doing to address the challenges of scaling up the adviser on-board process, training, and customer support of critical portfolio management software. Anyone want to chime in?] Since being acquired at this time last year by Advent Software, Black Diamond has increased its assets administered by 75% to $110 billion and it now serves 350 advisory firms.

Managing Customer Contact from Financial-Planning.com

[The category of CRM software for advisers is crowded, yes, but there really are just a few market dominators followed by a long tail of solutions with 1%-2% adoption. Joel Bruckenstein highlights new player Wealth Advisor CRM. My take? Registered reps might find it useful, independent RIAs likely will find it limited. At $65/month for a 15-user database, Redtail is a very attractive alternative.] Advisors already have no shortage of customer relationship management products to choose from, so does the marketplace really need another one? The folks at Wealth Advisor CRM think so, and perhaps they are right. Their offering may be just different enough and inexpensive enough to attract a sizable following.

FPPad Bits and Bytes for March 2

I spent several days in Washington D.C. this week presenting to advisors on new technology that can enhance personal and professional productivity. If you’re interested in booking me for any of my presentations, see my Speaking page for details.

First up this week is my column for the FPA NorCal Planner March newsletter titled When FPA NorCal and Twitter Collide highlighting the “back channel” discussions going on at advisor conferences.

Now on to this week’s stories of interest:

How AppCrown got a big RIA footprint overnight by handling Salesforce implementations from RIABiz.com

[This is an interesting development. Vendors and custodians are gravitating towards AppCrown, a Salesforce overlay and customization provider. Is it because they excel in supporting advisers, or are they simply the only reasonable option among weak competition? I’m not ready to make a decision one way or the other.] AppCrown LLC has come bursting out of the bulrushes to make itself a go-to technology company for hundreds of RIAs who want to use Salesforce customer relationship management software but who also know that they need help — big-time assistance — in making sure that the conversion and connective tissues are there.

Junxure Announces Agreement With Advisor Group to Provide CRM Integration from PRNewswire

[This is yet another integration Junxure supports with a proprietary system, this time being the Advisor Group’s (formerly AIG Advisor Group) VISION2020 portal. Advisor Group has over 4,600 independent financial advisers.] Junxure, a practice improvement firm that integrates technology, consulting, and training, announced that it has signed an agreement with Advisor Group to provide an integration offering financial advisors the ability to synchronize client data between Junxure and VISION2020 Advisor Portal (Advisor Portal), Advisor Group’s proprietary account tracking system. The integration is included as part of the Royal Alliance, FSC and SagePoint Financial advisor technology offerings.

RMB Capital Management Selects Black Diamond and Advent Portfolio Exchange Platforms to Support $2B Wealth Advisory Practice from Marketwire

[Not to be overshadowed by Orion Advisor Services’ announcement of partnering with a $3 billion RIA, Advent is publicizing its deal to migrate one $2 billion RIA’s portfolio data off of Advent Axys to Black Diamond. It doesn’t seem like a tremendous victory to me. After all, I believe Advent purchased Black Diamond to do exactly this: migrate customers on a legacy system to Black Diamond rather than lose them to the competition like Orion and Tamarac. Update: RIABiz published coverage of this today.] RMB Capital Management and Advent Software, Inc. announced today that they will broaden their strategic relationship by migrating RMB Capital Management’s approximately $2B in assets under management (AUM) from Advent’s Axys® to Black Diamond Performance Reporting, LLC’s platform and the Advent Portfolio Exchange® (APX) platform.

FPPad Bits and Bytes for December 23

I hope you and yours have a wonderful holiday. Here are this week’s stories of interest:

How Black Diamond is faring as a unit of Advent Software from RIABiz.com

[So if you’re a disgruntled adviser on Advent’s legacy software, which new provider are you going to consider? Now that Advent owns Black Diamond, it seems like a no-brainer that advisers will make the transition to the web-based solution with little or no transition cost.] Since the Jacksonville, Fla.-based up-and-comer in portfolio accounting software was purchased back in early June by the San Francisco-based market leader, it has increased the number of advisory practices it serves to 330 from 270, an increase of about 22%.

TD to work on workflows for third-party technology partners from InvestmentNews.com

[This is a good, mid-week submission from Davis Janowski about TD Ameritrade’s efforts to provide sample workflows to advisors using Veo Open Access.] TD Ameritrade Institutional has completed an agreement with technology consultancy Actifi Inc. to help it build automated workflows for TD’s Veo Open Access platform.

FPPad Bits and Bytes for September 16

Summer is “officially” over. How do I know (besides the snow blower inventory in Wisconsin, thank you Nathan Gehring)? Temperatures have finally dipped below 100 degrees here in Dallas, and the floodgates have opened on technology news for financial advisers. Most guilty this week is RIABiz with multiple contributions.

Here are this week’s stories of interest:

If you work hard but feel like you’re not making any progress, view my latest update for Blueleaf, Was Otis Redding Singing About Your Advisory Practice?

Salesforce.com is more than a CRM app from InvestmentNews.com

[Again, Salesforce continues to dominate technology talk for financial advisers. Here Davis Janowski highlights how the Salesforce platform does much more beyond the basic CRM functions.] When thinking about Salesforce, advisers shouldn’t view it as stand-alone, dedicated CRM software.

AdventConnect Report: Black Diamond will sell rebalancing software and better reporting on alternative investments from RIABiz.com

By the start of 2012, Black Diamond Performance Reporting, now part of Advent, intends to provide rebalancing software as part of its capabilities and to vastly improve its ability to report on alternative assets.

Fidelity jumps into the game of providing technology for picking RIA technology from RIABiz.com

[I noted Fidelity’s new spreadsheet tool in last week’s Bits & Bytes, so thankfully Lisa Shidler dipped in for more research on the tool for RIABiz.] Before RIAs rush out and spend tens of thousands of dollars on new technology, Fidelity Investments executives want them to look at its new tool for determining the economic impact of costly technology purchases.

As advisors flunk social media 101, CRM makers are starting to pick up the slack from RIABiz.com

[In this article, Nevin Freeman points out Pivotal CRM’s social features. I’ve been spoiled by social aggregators that integrate with email programs like Gmail and Outlook and I share those tools in my presentations to advisers.] Customer relationship management suites like Salesforce.com are beginning to put more emphasis on interacting with online social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter – and it may answer a prayer or two for RIAs who are tired of asking their 14 year-olds for advice.

FPPad Bits and Bytes for July 22

I’ve had a wonderful week here in Portland, OR speaking to the FPA chapter, spending the day yesterday in Seattle, and basking in 70 degree summer days. I’ll be back in Dallas Monday and Tuesday next week, then speaking to the FPA of San Antonio & South Texas on Wednesday and all-day client work Thursday and Friday. Whew!

I also just confirmed a new speaking engagement at the Cabinet NG Collaborate 2011 conference to be held in October in Huntsville, AL. See my speaking page for more information.

So with that, here are this week’s stories of interest:

Update on Black Diamond-Advent merger from RIABiz.com

Brooke Southall covers the four things advisers should know about how the knitting together of the two companies is progressing.

MSSB data breach is a lesson for advisers from InvestmentNews.com

Still putting client data on CD-ROMs and USB drives? Davis Janowski highlights several resources and best practices advisers should consider to keep their clients’ personal information safe and secure.

RIAs fed up with Facebook should hop on the Google+ bandwagon from RIABiz.com

So you’ve heard of this new network from Google called Google+. Nevin Freeman and Brooke Southall share their experience on the network and forecast how advisers might adopt it within their practice.



FPPad Bits and Bytes for June 10

I’ve spent the week catching up on a backlog of work, vendor demos, phone calls, and reading due to May’s busy travel schedule. Tungle.me deserves recognition for helping me keep my sanity while scheduling all the calls and demos this week. If you haven’t heard of Tungle.me, read my column for Morningstar Advisor A Simpler Way to Schedule Meetings and try it yourself.

Now on with this week’s stories of interest:

Cabinet NG Creates New Class of Web-Based Document Management with CNG-WEB from CabinetNG.com

Cabinet NG, an on-premise document management software application, extends its functionality to the web with its latest release of CNG-WEB, making document capture and access from remote locations easier than ever.

One RIA’s unvarnished views on Advent, Black Diamond, Tamarac, IAS, Orion and Schwab PortfolioCenter after an odyssey of test drives from RIABiz.com

Take six portfolio management applications, drop them in a bucket, shake it around with a dose of trials and due diligence, and out comes one winner (in theory). Here’s one adviser’s perspective on hashing out a portfolio management solution for his practice.

Choosing Software That Works for Your Advisory Firm—Part 7: The Keys to Success from AdvisorOne.com

The seventh update in a series by Spenser Segal of ActiFi designed to present best practices to advisors on how to choose, implement and monitor new technology for an advisory firm.

Advent Brings APX to Pershing NetX360 from Marketwire.com

Advent Software, Inc., a leading provider of software and services for the global investment management industry, today announced that Pershing’s introducing broker-dealer and independent registered investment advisor (RIA) customers will now have access to Advent Portfolio Exchange® (APX) through NetX360™, its innovative, open-architecture technology solution.


FPPad Bits and Bytes for May 20

Bill is attending NAPFA National 2011’s final day today after appearing as a panelist for Thursday’s session on adviser technology. As always, look for the live tweets from this conference which can be found under the #NAPFA11 hashtag.

Here are this week’s stories of interest:

Behind the scenes in social media at InvestmentNews.com

As regulators take their own sweet time coming up with guidelines for social media, the marketplace is coming up with its own solutions for financial advisers.

A blessing from Charles Goldman helped seal the Advent-Black Diamond deal from RIABiz.com

It was a big deal for the RIA business. Yet the planned combination of Advent Software and Black Diamond was not so large that investment bankers got called in to finance or advise on the transaction. What sufficed in place of Goldman Sachs, it turns out, was Charles Goldman.

Tweets That Mean Business from Financial Advisor Magazine

Advisors are finding that social media is more helpful than just sharing silly things like what you ate for dinner last night.



Advent Purchases Black Diamond Performance Reporting for Approximately $73 Million

Black Diamond Performance ReportingJust in to our wires is a press release from Advent Software, Inc., a provider of portfolio and financial management software to advisers. They just announced an agreement to purchase Jacksonville, Fla.-based Black Diamond Performance Reporting for approximately $73 million.

Click here to read the full press release at MarketWire.com

“Together, we believe Advent and Black Diamond can be even better, faster, and stronger, and we’re proud to add this powerful new alternative for advisors to our family of purpose-built solutions,” said Advent President Peter Hess.

We want to congratulate Black Diamond Founder and CEO Reed Colley and his entire team on the acquisition and look forward to continued efficiencies available to advisers as a result of the purchase.