AI & Finance™ | News for the Week Ending 5/24/24


Artificial intelligence in finance is going to change the way we think about and work with money—some of those changes will come quickly, others will be more gradual; some of those changes we’ll be able to recognize and measure as they happen, others we’ll only notice after the fact. 

A common sentiment is that AI will change the nature of work, with some or many workers becoming displaced. I think it’s more likely that AI reduces some roles, but also demands a new kind of worker, perhaps one that the economy has yet to train. From a labor market perspective, it’s impossible to know for sure whether AI creates more or fewer opportunities for employees moving forward. 

AI is already changing the kind of products we make available. We’ll refer you to the One80 Intermediaries release in this week’s roundup of headlines as an example. 

Artificial intelligence will likely ask for more from the global economy. More CPUs and GPUs will be necessary to provide the computing power behind AI deployments. More data storage will also be necessary to handle the databases that inform, or “teach,” AI engines. That means more data centers. More data also means that more sanitized and processed data is necessary—so computing power will have to be delegated to preparing and organizing data. 

All this computing power means that we’re about to increase the electrical power demand per person for computing around the world in dramatic fashion. Just as we’re working to reduce energy demand and consumption through efficiencies, we’re introducing power-hungry technologies like AI and blockchain. 

Generating more energy, no matter which method is used, and creating more global data storage and processing power will require the exploitation of more resources and materials—and the global economy will need to adjust rapidly to keep up with the demands of the technology. 

Great challenges and opportunities will abound. 

This week’s AI and Finance roundup of 13 items includes headlines from Alphathena, Sanctuary Wealth, Verint and Zebra Technologies.


1. Alphathena 

Alphathena announced a partnership with MainStreet Advisors, a Chicago-based RIA. This collaboration allows MainStreet’s clients, who are Banks and Trust Companies across the United States, to deliver personalized investing to clients, offering them a significant competitive advantage in the wealth management marketplace. 

Direct indexing allows advisors to shape portfolios according to clients’ values and tax characteristics to create customized solutions tailored to the specific needs of each end investor. It offers many of the cost and diversification benefits associated with passive index investing and tax loss harvesting, once available only to an exclusive set of ultra-high-net-worth individuals. 

Alphathena’s technology enables MainStreet Advisors to offer direct indexing to any client, regardless of net worth. The platform allows users to customize portfolios across 1,000+ ETFs and 50+ factors, including ESG, and to optimize for performance and benchmark tracking. Advisors using its platform are empowered with time-saving tools like an AI-enhanced workflow that can create personalized portfolios at scale. 

2. CLARA Analytics 

CLARA Analytics (“CLARA”), a provider of artificial intelligence (AI) technology for insurance claims optimization, announced two new senior level hires, adding Wayne Chung as the company’s new Chief Technology Officer and insurance industry veteran Mark Tainton, who will serve as CLARA’s Chief Customer Officer. 

Dr. Wayne Chung, as the former CTO of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, brings extensive experience in cybersecurity, AI, and systems engineering, making him an ideal steward for CLARA’s AI technology platform. Wayne has served as the CTO in several large organizations and currently contributes his skills to prestigious institutions such as Georgetown University Law Center and the U.S. Department of Justice. 

Mark Tainton will serve in the newly created role of Chief Customer Officer, underscoring CLARA’s commitment to achieving outstanding results for its clients. With over three decades in the insurance industry, he has deep expertise in data science, AI, business intelligence, and risk management. 

3. Guidewire 

Guidewire (NYSE: GWRE) and CLARA Analytics (“CLARA”), a provider of artificial intelligence (AI) technology for insurance claims optimization, announced that the new Built by Guidewire CLARA integration is now available in the Guidewire Marketplace to ClaimCenter users on Guidewire Cloud. 

Leveraging predictive and generative AI, CLARA’s solutions continuously monitor claims and provide actionable insights to help reach outcomes beneficial for insurers and insureds alike. CLARA’s technology follows claims for the whole life cycle, from first notice of loss to settlement, allowing early intervention. 

CLARA helps adjusters get injured claimants the right care through its provider scoring tool that identifies doctors consistently associated with positive outcomes on prior claims. The technology also helps avoid attorney involvement in claims. If attorneys do become involved, it provides detailed attorney scores and replacement alerts to help navigate litigation and potential settlement. 

4. Insurity 

Insurity, a provider of cloud software for insurance carriers, brokers, and MGAs, announced that it has partnered with Certificate Hero to transform certificate management in the property and casualty (P&C) insurance industry. Certificate Hero is a modern SaaS platform known for its efficient and accurate management of Certificates of Insurance. Insurity is the largest cloud software provider for P&C insurance, with over 330 customers deployed on AWS and Azure. 

Certificate Hero provides a comprehensive solution that allows insurance companies, brokers, and their clients to issue and manage Certificates of Insurance seamlessly from start to finish. This collaboration with Insurity integrates Certificate Hero seamlessly with carrier and MGA systems, enhancing both parties’ data utilization and operational capabilities. 

This strategic partnership addresses key challenges for commercial insurers by significantly reducing administrative burdens and operational costs, enhancing business speed and client satisfaction. With the integration of Certificate Hero, users can now issue and renew certificates at an unprecedented speed, saving up to 75% of the time typically required. For Insurity, this partnership means offering clients a modern solution to the traditionally cumbersome process of managing Certificates of Insurance. Certificate Hero’s use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning technology streamlines the creation and management of these documents, significantly reducing the time and cost associated with their issuance and renewal. 

5. Lincoln Financial Group 

Lincoln Financial Group announced the expansion of its efforts to enhance disability insurance claims processes with human-in-the-loop artificial intelligence (AI) technology, leading to better disability claims management analytics, improved claim guidance to assist claimants in their return-to-work journeys and streamlined processes to deliver more value to customers. 

The enhanced process implemented by Lincoln uses AI to analyze claims data and extract critical insights. This analysis helps support more accurate claim outcomes by providing claims professionals with timely insights that help them better assist claimants in their return-to-work journeys. 

Lincoln’s Group Protection business began its partnership with EvolutionIQ in early 2023 with its long-term disability business. After seeing success, Lincoln expanded the partnership this year to help improve the claimant experience in short-term disability. 

6. MindBridge 

MindBridge, a pioneer in AI-powered financial risk intelligence, unveiled major enhancements to its MindBridge platform that empowers companies to monitor 100% of financial transactions with unprecedented accuracy and efficiency. These advancements mark a significant milestone in the company’s mission to deliver continuous, actionable insights by surfacing enterprise risk across all critical financial flows and processes. 

The impact of artificial intelligence across the Enterprise has been exceptionally rapid. New frontiers in operating efficiency, revenue generation, and customer success are transforming businesses every day. While these efficiency gains are exciting, they open up a new frontier in managing risk for today’s enterprise customers. Finance and internal audit teams now require a continuous approach to their auditing methodologies and control frameworks. 

The MindBridge AI™ platform provides machine learning algorithms that analyze every transaction without the need for data science expertise. Pre-configured products for General Ledger, Vendor Invoice, Payroll, Corporate Cards, and Revenue work out-of-the-box, allowing your organization to have a unified internal controls structure that is data-driven and AI-powered. With over 135 billion financial transactions risk scored, it is the most widely used AI built for financial risk intelligence. 

7. One80 Intermediaries 

One80 Intermediaries (One80), a specialty insurance broker headquartered in Boston, announced the launch of artificial intelligence (AI) warranty coverage. 

Experts predict that third-party AI tools will increase workforce productivity by as much as 40% and add $14 trillion to the global economy by 2035. Despite the benefits of this rapidly evolving technology, it is estimated that third-party AI tools are responsible for over 55% of AI-related failures in organizations. In response, One80 now offers an AI Product Warranty coverage, protecting enterprises and third-party AI vendors against the loss of revenue or expense related to unreliable AI models. 

In partnership with Armilla AI, the coverage verifies open source and proprietary AI models, providing enterprises with confidence in the technology procured from third-party AI vendors. 

8. Proof 

Proof and Socure, a provider of artificial intelligence for digital identity verification, sanctions screening, and fraud prevention, announced a new partnership. The two companies will help businesses combat fraud in the agreements and forms that consumers rely on, which is a $200 trillion market opportunity. 

According to FINCEN’s most recent report from 2021, false records and forgery cause more than $45B in fraudulent activity every year, a risk even greater than the $18B associated with money laundering and other identity related risks. 

Industries are fighting an ever-increasing risk of fraud across their entire customer lifecycle. Businesses are susceptible to fraud from the moment an account is opened, to every form, authorization, loan, and transfer that customers perform. These interactions occur through documents that are approved, signed and notarized. Companies are exposed to the growing risks of fraud, impersonation, and forgery caused by artificial intelligence (AI) and the skyrocketing use of deepfakes, synthetic identities, and falsified records. 

9. Sanctuary Wealth 

Sanctuary Wealth (Sanctuary), home to the next generation of the industry’s most elite financial advisors, announced the appointment of Robert Coppola as chief technology officer (CTO). Mr. Coppola will report to CEO Adam Malamed and spearhead the next stage of Sanctuary’s technology strategy.  

Key goals for Mr. Coppola include identifying and prioritizing the development of cutting-edge digital solutions and advancing the build-out of the firm’s innovative technology platform, which is designed to help accelerate the growth of the sophisticated independent wealth management firms within the Sanctuary Wealth and tru Independence networks.  

Mr. Coppola will refine Sanctuary’s digital strategy to fully capture opportunities related to emerging solutions, including artificial intelligence. This will empower Partner Firms’ financial advisors to elevate service for existing client relationships, prospect for new clients and grow their businesses much more effectively and efficiently than ever before. With a proven track record of developing and managing complex initiatives and organizations globally while supporting extraordinary growth and improving efficiencies, Mr. Coppola has worked closely with enterprises across the size and scale spectrum, from large and complex organizations to start-up ventures. 

10. Toggle AI 

Toggle AI, a provider of innovative artificial intelligence solutions for investing used by hedge funds and leading Wall Street banks and brokerages announced they are acquiring Atom Finance, a leading financial data and analysis platform. 

Atom Finance is a top provider of frontend infrastructure for banks, brokerages, wealth managers and fintechs. The acquisition will enable Toggle AI to enhance its offering by incorporating Atom Finance’s robust suite of features, expanding its data universe, and providing users with an even more comprehensive investing experience. 

As part of the acquisition, SoftBank and General Catalyst, both prominent players in the venture capital landscape, will join Toggle AI’s cap table. This strategic arrangement underscores the collaborative effort to solidify Toggle AI’s position as a leader in intelligent investing solutions. 

11. VeriFast 

VeriFast, the AI-powered verification-as-a-service platform that automates financial analysis and decision-making for tenant screening, mortgage underwriting and other applications, announced the appointment of Ed Wolff to chair of its advisory board. A seasoned property technology and multifamily industry veteran, Wolff will leverage his deep multifamily technology experience to guide VeriFast as the company moves to expand its solutions to customers across North America. 

Wolff is a recognized industry influencer and thought leader who regularly speaks at conferences, webinars and podcasts on various topics including best practices, operations, industry trends and market updates. He currently serves as President & Chief Revenue Officer for Aerwave, and was previously president of insurance technology platform LeaseLock, where he spearheaded exponential growth, surpassing $10 billion in insured leases and serving more than 150 clients representing three million units. He also served as President of LeasingDesk Insurance & Screening at RealPage. Ed’s professional background extends to several executive roles on the property management side, including Chief Operating Officer at Cortland, Chief Administrative Officer at Pinnacle (now Cushman & Wakefield), as well as Place Properties (now PeakMade). Ed holds a Master of Science in Technology Management from Georgia Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management from Hofstra University. 

12. Verint 

Verint (NASDAQ: VRNT), The CX Automation Company, announced that a leading consumer financial services firm is achieving strong artificial intelligence (AI) business outcomes with Verint Intelligent Virtual Assistant (IVA). 

The firm reports experiencing significant financial and operational benefits as Verint IVA handles approximately 14 million customer service interactions annually and successfully resolves approximately 80 percent of customer interactions without transferring to a human agent. 

The firm initially deployed Verint IVA on their digital chat channel where they reported containment rates quickly rose to 80 percent. They subsequently added internal helpdesk channels and customer facing voice channels to the Verint IVA deployment. Today, Verint AI-powered bots embedded in Verint IVA enable the firm to increase agent capacity, expand service hours, lower operating costs, and elevate the customer experience. 

13. Zebra Technologies 

Zebra Technologies Corporation (NASDAQ: ZBRA), a digital solution provider enabling businesses to intelligently connect data, assets, and people, announced that its shareholders have elected Ken Miller to the company’s Board of Directors, effective May 9, 2024. Miller will join the Board’s Audit Committee. 

In February 2016, Miller became the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Juniper Networks, a leader in secure, AI-Native networking. He has been instrumental in leading Juniper through a successful transformation focused on returning the company to sustainable growth and driving software monetization. Miller is a member of Juniper’s Executive Committee, addressing Enterprise Risk Management and Cyber Security Risk. 

Miller joined Juniper Networks in 1999 and has held a variety of roles at the company. Prior to his current role, he served as Juniper Networks’ Senior Vice President of Finance, responsible for financial planning and partnering functions along with its tax, treasury, and global business services organizations.