Sep 20, 2016
Vestwell, the industry's first and only full-fiduciary, white-labeled retirement platform for the RIA community and beyond, emerged from stealth mode today and announced $4.5 million in funding. The seed round of financing was led by FinTech Collective, with participation from F-Prime Capital, Primary Venture Partners and Commerce Ventures.
"Retirement savings is a $25 trillion market opportunity which we think is still best served by financial advisors. Vestwell's mission is to provide advisors with a modern platform which reduces fees, increases transparency, and ensures compliance in a quickly shifting regulatory landscape," said Aaron Schumm, founder and CEO of Vestwell. "We're thrilled to partner with our deep FinTech-focused investors, who share this vision to build out this essential platform."
Vestwell's turnkey solution modernizes the traditional and dated 401(k), 403(b), and defined contribution solutions by combining the best parts of automated investing with the human touch that only trusted advisors can provide. The full product suite includes investment services, trading, administration, custody, recordkeeping, and trustee services.
The recent U.S. Department of Labor's "conflict of interest" rule changes the way investment advisors will have to run their firms. While existing retirement solutions can put advisors—and companies—at risk, Vestwell assumes 3(38) and 3(16) fiduciary responsibility which ultimately reduces both financial cost and legal liability.
"With more than 50% of working Americans not contributing to a retirement plan, there is clearly a fundamental problem with the mix of offerings in the market today," said Brooks Gibbins, co-founder and Managing Partner of FinTech Collective. "Vestwell will allow companies to bring more employees into the fold in a guided and low cost manner, while helping advisors grow their assets and increase the quality of their revenue."
"Vestwell's platform is unique because it uses automation to empower advisors to offer competitive retirement portfolios while maintaining the human interaction that comes from years of relationship building," said Benjamin Malka, General Partner of F-Prime Capital. "As fiduciary rules evolve, we see Vestwell not only protecting advisors but also providing them with the tools required to help their clients retire wealthier."
"The Vestwell team's proven track record, combined with a platform that offloads regulatory burden from both the RIA and the employer, will drive success for both parties in an increasingly challenging regulatory environment," says Brad Svrluga, General Partner of Primary Venture Partners. "The opportunity to partner with Aaron Schumm, a repeat founder in the FinTech industry with unique insights into this complex market, was something we simply couldn't pass up."
The Vestwell team's proven track record, combined with a platform that offloads regulatory burden from both the RIA and the employer, will drive success for both parties in an increasingly challenging regulatory environment.
Brad Svrluga, General Partner of Primary Venture Partners