Vestwell founder and CEO Aaron Schumm outlined his ambitious plans on my podcast: integrate Gradifi, the student loans benefit provider and financial wellness platform it acquired from Morgan Stanley this year; build an emergency savings program; and add health savings accounts (HSAs).

Large firms aren’t looking at Vestwell as a competitor to be quashed but as a strategic ally in their own plans for workplace expansion. Morgan Stanley is an investor and a partner. J.P. Morgan Asset Management selected Vestwell’s platform for its small business 401(k) services earlier this year. 

Apex Fintech Solutions
Credit the rise of the robo in part to Apex Fintech Solutions.

It’s the back-office platform of choice for direct-to-consumer platforms like SoFi and Webull. Apex technology and guidance have helped customers leverage relatively recent opportunities like fractional-share trading, robo-investing and real-time account opening that attract young investors.

In a podcast interview to be aired soon, Apex CEO Bill Capuzzi reflected on the state of wealth technology, saying the systems most firms have today are “old, crappy tech.”

Further, Capuzzi said the expense of maintaining aged technology constrains many firms from advising clients with less than $1 million in assets. And the technology in place today is still highly manual.

Capuzzi won’t settle for that. His company is prepared to help RIAs and institutions take advantage of the opportunity presented by young and old investors worldwide.

(If you’d like to hear my chat with Capuzzi, sign up to be notified when it airs.)

Wells Fargo
Of course, Wells Fargo isn’t a tech start-up. But it has the heart of one.

The fourth largest U.S. bank added LifeSync to its mobile app this year, first to its wealth and investment management clients and then to all consumer banking customers, expanding the universe of potential users to almost 70 million people.

LifeSync allows customers to personalize and customize their relationships with Wells Fargo bankers and financial advisors by:
• Creating their financial goals and annotating them with information—and even photos

• Viewing their financial “vitals,” including estimated net worth, FICO score, portfolio performance, credit card rewards and more

• Reading curated news and content that addresses their needs, goals and interests

There are already 1.6 million customers using LifeSync, with hundreds of thousands of goals articulated in the mobile app, said Michael Liersch, now head of advice and planning for all of Wells Fargo.