Advisor Tech Talk: 12/14/21

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BlackRock is redirecting trillions of ETF assets from State Street and spreading it across a handful of custodians. It may be Q4, but firms are busy making acquisitions and hiring fresh talent. Charting software integrated across a trio of platforms will support advisors in making investment decisions for clients. Advisors will have more ways to access annuity products. Below is a roundup of the latest press releases.

  • BlackRock: “BlackRock…announced that it has entered into agreements with BNY Mellon, Citi, and JP Morgan to join State Street as post-trade service providers for iShares’ $2.3 trillion in U.S.-domiciled ETFs. The announcement culminates a nearly two year-long due diligence process with the selection of several world-class financial institutions to support the growth of U.S. iShares ETFs and strengthen the broader ETF ecosystem. The transition of any U.S. iShares ETF assets to the new providers is expected to commence in the second half of 2022 and projected to take 18 months to complete.” 
  • ComplySci: “ComplySci, the leading provider of regulatory technology and compliance solutions for the financial services sector, today announced its acquisition of RIA in a Box, a leading SaaS provider of compliance, cybersecurity, and operational software solutions to the wealth management industry. The combination accelerates innovation across ComplySci and RIA in a Box and will deliver superior software, service, data, and consulting to an even broader audience of financial services organizations, including hedge funds, private equity firms, broker dealers, RIAs, and other wealth management firms.” 
  • Dover Partners: “Dayton, Ohio-based RIA Dover Partners, Inc. has implemented intelliflo’s RedBlack, which is a leading wealth management industry provider of rebalancing and trading software. RedBlack provides the firm with account and household level rebalancing, multi-tier portfolio models, and integration with Clearwater Analytics’ investment accounting system. Dover Partners was looking for an alternative to its former rebalancing and trading software after experiencing inefficiencies using the system and felt RedBlack would be a better fit for its rebalancing needs. Integration with Clearwater Analytics was a key requirement to enhance current workflows, reduce unnecessary manual work, and ensure continuity between systems.”
  • FNZ: “FNZ, the leading global wealth management platform, today announced that it has agreed to acquire Appway, the leader in client onboarding and client servicing for financial institutions. This strategic acquisition gives FNZ significant technology expertise in enterprise-grade low-code no-code workflow automation with deep domain expertise across the entire wealth management value chain. Hanspeter Wolf, CEO and Founder of Appway, will become Chief Technology Officer of the FNZ Group and join the Senior Leadership Team, effective on the acquisition closing date.”
  • GeoWealth: “GeoWealth, a modern TAMP built to support advisors, announced the hiring of its new Head of Asset Management, Jen Wing. Bringing a breadth of commercial and technical investment management experience to GeoWealth, Wing will play a critical role in shaping the firm’s flexible, outsourced model management program that supports both advisor-managed and third-party models…GeoWealth has also added Yasmin Bilger to its Board of Directors as an Independent Director.” Colin Falls, president of GeoWealth, stated: “For years, we have evaluated adding asset management talent to help us build the TAMP model of the future. Our search was very specific: dynamic, diverse, business builders that understand the integral role that technology will play in supporting the evolving needs of the modern advisor.” 
  • Pacific Life: “Pacific Life has announced the launch of its Advisory Solutions Desk, a concierge experience for RIAs.” Kevin Kennedy, SVP of sales and chief marketing officer for Pacific Life’s Retirement Solutions Division, stated, “Now, RIAs and their fee-only advisors can access Pacific Advisory Variable Annuity in a variety of ways—directly through our new tech-enabled Advisory Solutions Desk or through one of our well-respected, outsourced insurance desks or custodial distribution partners.” Brett Hynes, CEO of Pacific Select Distributors and VP of strategic partnerships for Pacific Life’s Retirement Solutions Division, said, “Our firm is focused on delivering relevant, digital-first solutions that advisors find add value to their practices.”
  • YCharts: “YCharts, a cloud-based investment analytics and communications platform for advisors, broker-dealers, and asset managers, announced integrations with Orion Advisor Technology, Redtail and SS&C Black Diamond Wealth Platform. Partnering with these three industry leaders helps wealth professionals enable smarter investment decisions and better client communications…Not only will these integrations empower advisors to more easily and efficiently make smarter investment decisions for their clients, but they offer a more streamlined approach to monitoring a client’s investments in one location.”