Savant Wealth Management has invested $3 million in Lumiant, an Australian fintech firm designed to empower financial advisors to connect with clients around their values and vision.

The Rockford, Ill.-based Savant, with $13.5 billion in assets under management, is the first U.S. enterprise for the startup, which launched in Sydney in February 2021.

“I am super excited about it,” Savant CEO and co-founder Brent Bodeski told Financial Advisor. He said Savant has finally found what it has been looking for to help advisors better communicate with clients. Over the years, he said they have been searching for the “perfect” portal and trying to identify tools to help their advisors become more focused on ideal futures and soft issues such as visions, values, goals, priorities, legacy.  

But there was nothing that fits the bill, he said. “Every client portal we looked at out there, they are a bunch of crap,” he said. He explained that they put in investments and the analysis front and center. “What’s missing are all the other components of financial advice,” he said, noting that the components include health, well-being, retirement, succession planning and estate planning.

He said he and his team up until in January were discussing spending $10 million to build their own portal, which would probably have take five years. “So ironically, we had just initiated to build this on our own and then I heard about Lumiant,” he said.

Bodeski said he met with founders and was able to see what they had built. The portal, which was up and running in Australia and Africa, included 75% of what they had envisioned for their firm, he said. “They already solved 75% of what we were thinking and to my knowledge, they are the only fintech out there that’s focusing on the soft issues or the matters that a non-financial spouse gets excited about,” he said. 

In addition to not having to recreate the wheel, Brodeski said Lumiant was early enough on the scene that they wanted to partner with Savant, not just as its first U.S. enterprise client, but to get help in co-developing the portal over the next couple of years to take it from one version to another.

“This jump starts us to the next 12 months. We’ll have what we thought was going to cost us $10 million and take us five years … and frankly we got a lot better platform than I think we could have created on our own,” he said.

The company said Savant will use the Lumiant platform “to better align assets, decisions, and strategies with client priorities and values. It will also support the delivery of advice in a consistent, scalable, and efficient manner, maximizing the time and effort of Savant advisors to provide wise counsel.”

Lumiant CEO and co-founder Santiago Burridge said in a statement, “For more than 30 years, they have committed to applying the smartest financial thinking to serve individuals and their families in a fiduciary capacity. Savant’s approach, values, and interests align with ours. We look forward to working with them to ensure our platform drives referrals, retention and revenue for firms in the U.S. as well as helping more people live their best possible lives.”

Brodeski noted that financial advisors in Australia are about seven to 10 years on average ahead of their counterparts in America because the industry is much more regulated there and a lot of advisors are moving away from products and commissions. He said that is the reason this advice portal evolved and noted that it has shown some early success.

That, he said, could be a potential catalyst for advisors here to adopt more quickly to the platform.

As part of the deal, Brodeski will sit on the Lumiant board. He will join Gavin Spitzner, president at Wealth Consulting Partners, and Matthew Brinker, managing partner at Merchant Investment Management and a former United Capital executive.