Tag Archives: Blueleaf

Reactions as the 2016 TD Ameritrade Institutional National LINC Conference closes

Several integrated solution providers in the Veo® Village share the technology themes that emerged during their conversations with advisors at the 2016 TD Ameritrade Institutional National LINC Conference.

Our coverage from TD Ameritrade Institutional National LINC is brought to you by Wealthbox CRM. Sign up for a free trial today at wealthbox.com

wealthbox logo 620

Click here to watch the video on YouTube

FPPad Bits and Bytes for February 6

On today’s broadcast, the rumors are true: eMoney gets acquired by Fidelity Investments, Advent Software gets acquired by SS&C Technologies, and the SEC reveals troubling cybersecurity issues after its first round of broker-dealer and adviser examinations.

So get ready, FPPad Bits and Bytes begins now!

(Click to watch FPPad Bits and Bytes on YouTube)

Today’s episode is brought to you by Wealthbox CRM.  Version 1.7 just released with delectable features like two-way Google Calendar synchronization, support for popular email newsletter services, an integrated Facebook feed, and more!

Wealthbox CRM

Sign up for a free trial of Wealthbox today by visiting fppad.com/wealthbox

Here are this week’s stories of interest:

Fidelity Investments® Acquires eMoney Advisor from BusinessWire, and

Fidelity Acquires eMoney Advisor PFM Dashboard, Gets Financial Planning Software Thrown In? from Kitces.com

[This week’s top story that EVERYONE is talking about is eMoney’s acquisition by Fidelity Investments. Sources close to the deal cited a purchase price “north of $250 million” with a valuation around four times eMoney’s revenue. This deal marks the first time I can recall an institutional custodian taking ownership of a financial planning software provider. Nearly a dozen others that I listed on FPPad are all privately held with no custodial affiliation.

So the burning question is: What’s the future of eMoney? Executives from eMoney and Fidelity reaffirmed that the company will continue to operate independently, but have the financial backing of Fidelity to accelerate product development and growth. Now for me, eMoney seemed to be doing just fine on its own, always having a top spot in advisor technology surveys and having just released a big emX update two months ago, so did they really need to make a deal?

But on the other hand, if you read Michael Kitces’ take on Nerd’s Eye View, he believes Fidelity purchased eMoney primarily for its client-facing personal financial management tool, or PFM, that works a lot like Mint.com, and just happened to get eMoney’s financial planning software along with the deal. Robo-investment allocators are raising the stakes on client-facing dashboards, but buying eMoney for its PFM solution just doesn’t add up to me.

There are many other PFM options and client-facing dashboards out there like Aqumulate, Blueleaf, MoneyDesktop (MX), and even Personal Capital, who built their own, probably for a lot less than $250 million. So really, nobody knows what the future holds now that eMoney is under Fidelity’s ownership, and you can add me to the list of speculators that can only guess how this deal will influence your decision on what financial planning software you choose to use.] Fidelity Investments® announced today that it has agreed to acquire eMoney Advisor, a leading wealth planning software company, as part of Fidelity’s commitment to deliver an industry leading suite of innovative and meaningful tools and technology to its customers.

SS&C acquires rival Advent Software for $2.7 billion from IBS Intelligence

[Next up is news of another deal, as Advent Software is going to be acquired by SS&C Technologies for $2.7 billion. SS and who? I had never heard of them either until this week, because SS&C is primarily focused on institutions and enterprises, not independent RIAs.

So on the institutional side, the deal makes sense because SS&C is already the largest user of Advent’s Geneva solution, with around 2,400 internal users. But what about the Axys and Black Diamond solutions used by you, the independent adviser?

Bill Stone, SS&C’s chairman and CEO, said in a conference call that the company “did not see anything in Advent’s portfolio that we’d want to rationalise” and “killing a product is the last thing you want to do.”

Cough, TechFi.

So, Advent users, you’re in a little bit of limbo, too until we see this deal pan out, but I suspect not a whole lot will change in the near term. These are well-established companies with mature products that collectively have very high user retention.] The acquisitive US-based firm, SS&C, has expanded its presence in the wealth management software market with the all-cash acquisition of rival Advent Software.

Cybersecurity Examination Sweep Summary from SEC.gov

[And finally, the SEC released its first Cybersecurity Examination Sweep Summary this week, outlining key findings from over a hundred broker-dealer and RIA examinations. Here are my most important takeaways:

3 out of 4 advisers have been the target of cyber attacks, only 1 out of 5 advisers actually have cybersecurity insurance, and very few advisers know where to identify best practices on cybersecurity. Here’s a hint: THIS SHOW is one of them!

Clearly I should dedicate a show in the future exclusively to cybersecurity, but in the meantime, download my free guide on security at fppad.com/security and connect a vendor that specializes in RIA best practices like Itegria, Envision RIA, External IT, True North Networks, Right Size Solutions, and others.] OCIE’s National Examination Program staff, recently examined 57 registered broker-dealers and 49 registered investment advisers to better understand how broker-dealers and advisers address the legal, regulatory, and compliance issues associated with cybersecurity.

Here are the stories that didn’t make this week’s broadcast:

Wealthbox 1.7 – New Integrations & Enhancements from Wealthbox

Today we’re releasing Wealthbox CRM version 1.7 with a flavorful assortment of new add-ons and enhancements.

Advizr Announces Strategic Partnership with Blueleaf Portfolio Management and Reporting Software from BusinessWire

Advizr, a next generation financial planning software, today announced a strategic partnership with Blueleaf, a leading client engagement, data automation and reporting platform for advisors and clients.

Cambridge to have robo offering for advisers in 2016 from InvestmentNews.com

Independent broker-dealer Cambridge Investment Research Inc. plans to have a competitive robo-type offering that works in sync with its 3,000 advisers’ practices in 2016.


Watch FPPad Bits and Bytes for February 6, 2015

Watch FPPad Bits and Bytes for February 6, 2015

FPPad Bits and Bytes for December 6

On this week’s broadcast, learn the hits and misses from the year’s most anticipated advisor technology survey, the pending termination of several financial planning software products catches advisors off guard, how the leading independent custodians are stepping up their technology, and more.

So get ready, FPPad Bits and Bytes begins now!

(watch FPPad Bits and Bytes on YouTube)

This week’s episode is brought to you by Angie Herbers Incorporated, a consulting and research company to financial advisory firms, who just released a new white paper called Take Two: The New Direction of Succession that addresses the key elements to create a successful transition to your junior advisors.

ahi 600

Download the Take Two white paper for free, along with other practice management resources, by visiting fppad.com/ahi

Here are this week’s top stories:

Tech Survey 2013: What’s New iIn Advisor Tech? from Financial-Planning.com

[Leading off as the top story is one of the most anticipated technology articles that comes out every year. The first of December marks the release of the annual Financial Planning Magazine Technology Survey, where Joel Bruckenstein digests over 1,100 responses about the various software programs and practice management tools used by financial advisors today.

So who are the winners and losers from this year’s survey?

Redtail Technology, Salesforce, and Tamarac Advisor CRM are the winners among CRM software, as advisors continue to embrace cloud-based technology, with slippage coming from Junxure, ProTracker, ACT, and Goldmine.

In financial planning software, this year’s results are essentially a carbon copy of last year’s survey, with MoneyGuidePro, eMoney, and MoneyTree claiming the top three spots.

And the same is true with portfolio management software, as the top 6 vendors are also a total repeat of last year’s results.

So who missed out on opportunities this year? The survey randomly selected new products from Blueleaf, inStream, and Market76, but found that few advisors had even heard of these relatively new players, which tells me that financial advisors, well, those who don’t watch Bits and Bytes, continue to be a challenging market for new providers to gain exposure.] The move to the cloud is finally taking place. In category after category of this year’s Financial Planning Tech Survey, we found software providers making the shift, and advisors responding.

NaviPlan financial planning desktop products to be discontinued from InvestmentNews

[The next story features news from Advicent Solutions, the company formerly known as Zywave, who provides a suite of financial planning software to advisors under the NaviPro brand.

In an unexpected announcement to some users, the company announced it will sunset six of its NaviPlan products on March 31, 2014, citing an “ever-changing marketplace.”

Going away will be all of the NaviPlan Extended and NaviPlan Standard desktop-based variants, making the cloud-based NaviPlan Premium and NaviPlan Profiles the sole applications that will receive ongoing support and enhancements in 2014 and beyond.

This news reinforces the trend of advisors adopting cloud-based solutions as seen in the Financial Planning Software Survey, so don’t be surprised when other providers announce the discontinuation of their own desktop-based software in favor of cloud-based alternatives.] NaviPlan financial planning products for desktop computers will be discontinued as the owner develops its NaviPro products for online use.

Plowing Ahead from FA-Mag.com

[Software providers aren’t the only ones making big changes in advisor technology, as four of the major custodians are also investing heavily in advisor-facing technology in a very competitive arms race. Once again, Joel Bruckenstein interviewed executives from Fidelity, Pershing, Schwab Advisor Services, and TD Ameritrade Institutional to reveal their strategies to help make advisors more efficient and more profitable through enhanced technology.

There’s a ton of great information in this article, so be sure to read it to see what your custodian is doing to help you grow your business.] Over the last several years, custodians have been investing in advisor-facing technology like never before.

Envestnet | Tamarac’s Advisor Xi(R) Platform Added To Pershing’s NetX360(R) Technology Channel from WSJ.com

[And finally, one company benefiting from custodian technology enhancements is Envestnet|Tamarac. This week, the company announced that its Advisor Xi suite will soon integrate directly with Pershing’s NetX360 custodial platform, giving advisors straight-through processing capabilities for trades in accounts held at Pershing, as well as access to real-time custodial account data.

The real-time data feeds will compliment existing integrations with Schwab and TD Ameritrade supported today, and expand straight-through processing trading capabilities announced at Schwab IMPACT several weeks ago.

Tamarac anticipates that the new integrations will roll out to its 660 firms during the first quarter of 2014.] Envestnet | Tamarac, a division of Envestnet, Inc., a leading provider of integrated, web-based portfolio and client management software for independent advisors and wealth managers, announced today that it has formally begun the integration of its Advisor Xi(R) platform into Pershing’s NetX360(R) custodial channel for investment professionals and Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs). Advisors will have access to this integration in the first half of 2014.


20131206 episode thumbnail 600

Watch FPPad Bits and Bytes for December 6, 2013




FPPad Bits and Bytes for February 15

Before I kick off this week’s top stories, here’s a quick and easy resource to use to see how strong your password is against a brute-force attack. Click the image to visit http://howsecureismypassword.net/

Note: You should probably avoid typing your real password into this program. Instead, use a close approximation!

Rate your password's strength at howsecureismypassword.net

Rate your password’s strength at howsecureismypassword.net

Here are this week’s stories of interest:

Social Media Minute Podcast by RegEd: LinkedIn Skill Endorsements from RegEd.com

[In this seven-minute podcast, RegEd’s Blane Warrene addresses issues with LinkedIn Recommendations and Endorsements. It’s a good overview for those dipping a toe in LinkedIn and a good refresher for social media pros.] A rapidly trending topic continues to be LinkedIn Skills Endorsements. They are a much more gray area than Recommendations as it pertains to being classified as testimonials under SEC guidelines for the financial services industry.

Microsoft Eyes “Advisor in a Box” Solution for Windows 8 from Financial-Planning.com

[Why am I such a skeptic when it comes to Microsoft products these days? Who knows more about meeting the specific needs and demands of today’s financial planning and wealth management client? You, or Redmond’s Mister Softee? However, I’m more optimistic of a partnership like the ones identified with Envestnet|Tamarac, because they do know a thing or two about what advisers need.] Thomas E. Feher, the financial services industry director for Microsoft’s U.S. Dynamics Industry Team, said Microsoft has already partnered with several “industry partners,” including Envestnet|Tamarac and Salientia to provide CRM solutions to advisors through the Windows 8 platform. But, he said, the next step is a preloaded package of tools and services specifically tailored for each advisor on the Windows 8 platform.

Orion Mail is Live from OrionAdvisor.com

[You heard about Orion Mail from both Eric Clarke (see: Salesforce, powered by Orion Connect, gets phone system integration and smarter email reports) and Jon Reiners (see: TD Ameritrade’s open technology helps push Orion Advisor Services over the $100 billion in platform assets mark). Now the feature is live for Orion’s 300 clients and was being demoed on the floor of T3 this past week. Orion’s blog has a 90-second sneak peek video of the new feature.] Orion Mail enables advisors to create custom email templates that communicate account information to clients quickly and easily.

Bill Winterberg’s Technology Planning Tips for Financial Advisors from AdvisorWebsites.com

[Advisor Websites contacted me a few weeks ago to capture some of my best technology ideas for new gadgets, video content, and software integration.] Recently we were lucky enough to sit down with Bill Winterberg and pick his brain about the changing industry and what he expects will be key, vital factors when it comes to technology for financial professionals in 2013.

How Blueleaf sees itself taming the RIA’s two betes noire — and how it is being challenged on that from RIABiz.com

[You’ve known about Blueleaf since mid-2011, right (see: FPPad and Blueleaf Partner to Deliver Adviser Technology Content)? And plus, I interviewed Blueleaf founder John Prendergast in February 2012 (see: Video Spotlight: John Prendergast of Blueleaf discusses experimentation and challenging assumptions). Here, RIABiz covers the “dead simple” portfolio reporting provider (important distinction: it’s NOT portfolio management!) in a well-balanced article.] Blueleaf founder, John Prendergast, comes by this start-up honestly in the sense that it arose out of a need he heard expressed by friends. He exudes a teflon confidence that is a much a part of this article as anything else.

Video Spotlight: John Prendergast of Blueleaf discusses experimentation and challenging assumptions

In today’s video spotlight, John Prendergast, co-founder and CEO of Blueleaf, discusses a variety of topics relevant to advisers as the advice delivery model continues to evolve. Learn what Blueleaf does for both advisers and consumers and how the company challenges assumptions and learns new insight by testing and experimentation.

(click here to view on YouTube)

[PODCAST] Competing Against “Robo Advisors:” Delivering Advice in a New World from T3 2012

Yesterday I posted two YouTube videos from the session from T3 2012 titled Competing Against Robo Advisors. I know that many of you prefer to download content like this to your media player of choice (i.e. iPhone) and listen to it on your jog or your commute home.

Using the audio from the Robo Advisor session, I created my first podcast. I’m currently going through the approval process with iTunes, but in the meantime you can listen and download the podcast directly from FPPad.