Envestnet, which provides wealth management technology and services to financial advisors, said Monday it had acquired Wheelhouse Analytics, a provider of data analytics, mobile sales solution and online education tools to financial advisors, asset managers and enterprises.
The acquisition is a “real opportunity to provide data analytics on data” Envestnet already has, said President Bill Crager. Wheelhouse Analytics’ tools will be combined with those of Yodlee, the data aggregator and software developer for personal financial management website, which Envestnet acquired in November 2015.
“Clients want more insights into their business—their business dashboard and peer group analysis—to compare themselves to other advisors,” said Crager, referring to the firm’s 50,000 advisor clients. They want to compare their growth, performance and fees “to benchmark their businesses,” said Crager.
The Wheelhouse Analytics acquisition will help advisors do that and help firms comply with the DOL fiduciary rule, which takes effect in early April 2017. For example, it can help firms transitioning clients from one solution that includes commission payments to advisors with another that is strictly fee-based, said Crager.
“With Wheelhouse we can grab a lot of data on investment products on the Envestnet platform and elsewhere and present that back to the firm to present that back to the client,” explained Crager.
This is nothing new for Envestnet. It was already collecting that analysis from Wheelhouse Analytics as part of a partnership with the firm. “We needed to own it; to have it in our security firewall,” said Crager, explaining the rationale behind the acquisition. He didn’t disclose the cost of the privately held company but said it was “immaterial” to Envestnet.
The acquisition follows Envestnet’s introduction last week of a set of technology solutions and consulting services to help advisors and enterprises develop DOL-compliant investment portfolios, new account documentation and disclosure and assessment of a client’s financial situation and goals to learn what’s in their best interest.
The Wheelhouse acquisition is the third acquisition for Envestnet in less than a year and a half. In May 2015 it acquired Finance Logix, a technology firm that provides financial planning and wealth management software solutions to banks, broker-dealers and RIA firms. The Yodlee acquisition followed, closing in November 2015.
Of the 50,000 advisors processing over 5 million investment accounts that Envestnet serves, just over 35,000 are fiduciaries to 1.439 million accounts. The remaining advisors license Envestnet software.
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