Empower Retirement, the second largest retirement plan recordkeeper in the U.S., has teamed up with hybrid robo-advisor Wealthsimple and custodian firm Apex Clearing to develop a digital wealth management platform for individual consumers.
The platform will offer one-stop shopping for investment advice, financial planning and insurance to mass affluent investors who may not currently work with a professional advisor. It will be available for existing Empower IRA customers as well as prospective individual investors and is expected to debut during the second half of next year.
“Empower has a legacy of providing cutting-edge tools to help participants take action on their retirement plan — and now we’re bringing that kind of innovation to wealth management,” said Empower Retirement President Edmund F. Murphy III, in a statement.
Murphy said the firm sees “a significant opportunity” to help investors “achieve greater financial security with the help of innovative, easy-to-use digital tools.”
The new platform, which Murphy described as “advisor-centric,” will provide a simple and intuitive interface and an integrated managed account and service experience.
“This new platform combines the expertise of three firms to offer such a solution to advisors and their clients,” said Michael Katchen, CEO of Wealthsimple, in a statement. “There’s demand for wealth management solutions centered on individual clients’ needs that are available to everyone, regardless of age or net worth.”
Wealthsimple operates a robo-advisor available to clients in the U.S., Canada and U.K that combines technology and human advisors and is working with Empower to build the user experience of the new retail platform.
Apex will create and manage back-office functions for the new platform, providing digital clearing and execution services.
Details about when the new platform will be available or its cost or minimums were not disclosed.
Empower has approximately $570 billion in assets under administration and 8.7 million participants in 38,000 employer-sponsored retirement plans.