The Chinese social networking platform Renren has invested $40 million in online broker Motif Investing with the goal to assist Motif in its international expansion, the companies announced on Tuesday.
“We believe Motif Investing is the kind of company that can transform markets,” said Renren’s founder Joe Chen in a statement. “Its disruptive technology has broad application to retail and institutional investing in the U.S. and international markets.”
Motif Investing allows investors to trade “motifs” (aka, intelligently weighted basket of stocks and bonds built around themes, investing styles or multi-asset models) in single transactions for low fees.
In addition to Renren’s investment, Chen will also join Motif’s board of directors. Hardeep Walia, co-founder of the Silicon Valley-based Motif Investing, believes he will be a valuable asset for Motif.
“Joe is one of the most respected pioneers in China’s thriving Internet market,” said Walia, in a statement. “I am thrilled to have him on our board and look forward to working with him as we consider the complexities of being a global company.”
Also joining the board of directors with Chen is Carl Stern, former vice chairman of the Investment Banking Division at Goldman Sachs and former chairman and CEO at Boston Consulting Group.
“Motif Investing is experiencing success because it provides a differentiated model to advisors and retail investors that make smart investing simple at minimal cost,” said Stern in a statement. “I look forward to working with Hardeep to help Motif continue to grow both in the U.S. and abroad.”