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Cetera Is First Client for Broadridge’s New Offering: Tech Roundup

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What You Need to Know

  • Cetera is the first client for fintech firm Broadridge's new Wealth InFocus next-gen wealth communications solution, the companies said Thursday.
  • The new Morgan Stanley at Work Corporate Retirement Portal was designed to offer Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Plan advisors with a one-stop shop, consolidated view of workplace retirement plans and participant data.
  • Kitces.com will provide advanced educational content on tax planning through an integration into Holistiplan’s tax planning software for paying Holistiplan users.

Cetera Financial Group is the first client for fintech firm Broadridge Financial Solutions’ new Wealth InFocus next-gen wealth communications solution, the companies said in a joint announcement on Thursday.

The new, “investor-centric” approach to wealth communications developed by Broadridge provides a better digital experience, according to 78% of Cetera’s surveyed pilot clients, while 88% of respondents said they would like to receive a Wealth InFocus digital communication on an ongoing basis, the firms said.

Wealth InFocus, which was built upon the cloud and an application programming interface-driven infrastructure, consolidates, aggregates and presents the most important information advisors need across various account and regulatory communications, including statements, proxies and prospectuses, they noted.

Wealth InFocus replaces traditional static communications, creating a new “holistic experience” that the companies said “makes it easier for investors to consume and better understand account details while providing advisors with new opportunities to reinforce their value and communicate directly with their clients.”

Morgan Stanley at Work Debuts Retirement Portal

Morgan Stanley at Work announced the rollout of its new Corporate Retirement Portal on Wednesday.

The technology solution was designed to offer Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Plan advisors a “one-stop shop, consolidated view” of workplace retirement plans and participant data through the WealthDesk platform, according to the company.

Plan advisors have traditionally used third-party tools and resources to manage their clients’ retirement plan assets held away at recordkeepers, Morgan Stanley at Work noted. The new Corporate Retirement Portal, however, enables them to have access to a comprehensive view of their clients’ retirement plan accounts, inclusive of the services provided to held-away retirement plans and plan sponsors, the company said.

Advisors can now “work seamlessly with plan sponsors and provide participants targeted financial education through Morgan Stanley Wealth Management’s Next Best Action, an engagement tool that powers scalable customized content delivery,” Morgan Stanley at Work said.

The portal is compliant with the recent Department of Labor cybersecurity guidance for plan sponsors, service providers and plan participants, ensuring the company’s clients’ data gets transferred securely and the right safeguards are in place to protect their information, the company said.

Holistiplan Teams With Kitces.com

Holistiplan announced a new partnership with Kitces.com on Wednesday. As part of their pact, Kitces.com will provide advanced educational content on tax planning through integration into Holistiplan’s tax planning software for paying Holistiplan users, they said.

All Holistiplan users will also receive an exclusive offer to access the Kitces.com updated-for-2022 tax course, “How to Find Planning Opportunities When Reviewing a Client’s Tax Return.”

The partnership also coincides with a recent expansion of Kitces.com, which last year rolled out its new Kitces Courses on Reviewing Tax Returns and Optimizing Social Security for Couples.

This summer, Kitces rolled out a 2022 update to its tax planning course, How to Find Planning Opportunities When Reviewing a Client’s Tax Return, which the companies said “forms the centerpiece of its partnership with Holistiplan.”

An increasing number of advisors are looking to further extend their knowledge in providing deeper advice in the domain of tax planning, the companies said.

Snappy Kraken Intros Two-Way Syncing Data Integration

Marketing technology firm Snappy Kraken announced Thursday it initiated two-way data synchronization from customer relationship management providers Redtail Technology, Salesforce and Wealthbox.

Advisors can now save significant “time and hassle by offering one accurate source of information at their fingertips” through its technology, the firm said.

Without data flowing freely in both directions, advisors are always on the hunt for the most updated source of addresses and other demographic information, it noted.

But the new bidirectional integrations with the financial services CRM providers “solve that problem by ensuring data is updated in real-time, saving advisors from the needless pain of having to constantly double-check and second guess the accuracy of their information,” according to Snappy Kraken.

ACA Group Buys Focus 1

ACA Group, a provider of governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) solutions to clients in the financial services industry, said Wednesday it acquired Focus 1 Associates.

Focus 1 is a provider of regulatory compliance serving wealth management, private equity, hedge fund and diversified financial services firms that specializes in RIA compliance.

Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

SMArtX Adds New Strategies

SMArtX Advisory Solutions, which specializes in unified managed accounts technology and developed the SMArtX turnkey asset management platform, said Wednesday it added seven new investment strategies to its platform.

The SMArtX platform now supports 1,102 model-traded and manager-traded separate account strategies from 271 asset managers, it said.

Three new asset management firms — Astor Investment Management, Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors and Winslow Capital — were added to SMArtX’s platform, giving advisors additional strategies to build and offer custom portfolios at scale. The new offerings are distributed and traded by SMArtX across seven custodial platforms.

Meanwhile, Cypress Capital Partners and Eulav Asset Management, two existing firms on the SMArtX platform, are now offering investors access to more strategies. “The new strategies across all five firms encompass model delivery exposures to equity, fixed income, and infrastructure strategies,” it said.

iCapital, Ares Wealth Expand Partnership

iCapital and Ares Wealth Management Solutions said Tuesday they have expanded their partnership to offer RIAs and other advisors greater access to a broadened menu of alternative investment solutions and a comprehensive set of tools to support the development of client portfolios.

AWMS is “leveraging the broad capabilities of iCapital’s technology to offer investment solutions tailored for the global wealth management community across Ares Management’s credit, private equity, real estate and secondaries asset classes,” according to the firms.

AWMS will launch an Ares-branded, iCapital-powered site to support the AWMS team as it manages the distribution, marketing and client management activities for several investment solutions, including evergreen, drawdown, exchange and ’40 Act funds, the companies said.

Meanwhile, ICapital will “provide feeder fund structuring and management, present the investment for the offering and facilitate the ongoing servicing,” according to the firms. That includes investor onboarding, electronic subscription processing, fund servicing and reporting for the life of the investments, they said.

Ares also offers access to a subset of its investment products through the iCapital flagship platform.

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