ScratchWorks — a fintech accelerator sponsored by Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions and the University of Colorado Leeds School of Business — says five enterprises have been picked as semi-finalists for its yearly contest, which connects startups looking for funding with wealth management leaders.
These five groups include the billing and payment solution AdvicePay, led by popular blogger and advisor Michael Kitces and Alan Moore.
Other finalists are Reallocate, a turnkey allocation platform that includes real estate investments; SolidusLink, a precious metals platform; Winston Matthews, a virtual reality firm run by a teen entrepreneur (of the same name) that aims to improve client marketing and education; and 280 CapMarkets’ BondNav, a bond trading platform for RIAs.
Earlier this week, Cetera Financial Group says its 8,000-plus advisors are getting access to AdvicePay on its platform, so investor clients can pay for fee-for-service advice in a more streamlined and automated way. (Earlier this year, AdvicePay raised $2 million through an online campaign.)
“The convergence of 21st century financial advice and financial technology is upon us. Advisors who seek to optimize their service to clients must not only embrace financial technology but also be part of championing and supporting its development,” according to The Colony Group Chairman and CEO Michael Nathanson, a finals judge.
“ScratchWorks is leading the way in bringing financial advisors and entrepreneurs together in the ultimate collaboration for the future of the industry,” he added.
The group’s second-annual contest drew 50% more applications than last year. It also welcomed a new investor and judge: Beacon Pointe Advisors CEO Shannon Eusey.
She joins Mariner Wealth Advisors CEO and President Marty Bicknell, RMB Capital CEO and Chief Investment Officer Richard M. Burridge Jr., Covenant Managing Director John D. Eadie, Brighton Jones CEO Jon Jones, and Nathanson. Collectively, these six firms work with over $60 billion in client assets under management.
“ScratchWorks is an example of our profession at its best, bringing together the experience and industry know-how of the investors and the disruptive, creative thinking of fintech startups,” said David Canter, head of the registered investment advisor segment for Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions, in a statement. “This is a great opportunity for these fintech firms to get broader recognition in the industry.”
The panel of six investor judges will narrow down the list from five semi-finalists to three finalists over the next week or so. The three finalists then will make their pitches live on stage during the Barron’s Independent Summit for RIAs later this month in Salt Lake City.
Last year, the panel named two finalists for funding support: InvestmentPOD, an automated investing platform, and Snappy Kraken, a marketing platform. Less than one year later, Snappy Kraken is on pace to double year-over-year revenue.
“ScratchWorks does a fantastic job of helping startups like ours get access to mentors who are both willing and able to help us reach higher levels of success,” according to Snappy Kraken CEO Robert Sofia.
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