Many companies are using artificial intelligence and machine learning to deliver consumer fintech services. Always, TIFIN uses these tools to drive the personalization of Wealth Management, Founder and CEO Vinay Nair noted.
A former professor of finance at the Wharton School, Nair founded 55ip, a tax-smart investment strategy engine. He sold the company to JP Morgan in December 2020 and remains special advisor to the CEO of JP Morgan’s asset management business.
TIFIN aims to make the wealth generation experience more appealing to the individual, whether they are a professional financial advisor or an independent investor. The key, Nair explained, is to focus on customization opportunities.
Some companies develop a handful of streams and put the custom label on their technology, but it’s not that simple, Nair said. Engage the individual, build a set of customization capabilities, and deliver it through front-end software and APIs. Think Netflix or Spotify but with more responsibility for better results.
TIFIN Wealth helps financial advisors provide personalized services
There are three components in TIFIN. The first, TIFIN Wealth, serves financial advisers and wealth management companies. They offer planning capabilities and risk and personality assessments that help professionals better understand their clients. Using an algorithm, content can be provided that matches a customer’s needs. Its success is quantified by an engagement score.
A custom giving element allows customers to create a donor-advised fund that coordinates family giving. TIFIN has also recently developed the ability to build custom allocations to alternatives such as hedge funds and private equity funds.
Magnifi: Think Google for the personalization of investment criteria
Magnifi is an investment marketplace that allows investors to search for investments that meet specific criteria such as those in certain countries (or excluding certain ones) or those that perform well when inflation rises. Investors can even look for companies that meet ESG standards.
The ultimate vision is to provide a complete investment experience. Around 1,600 advisors and 50,000 individuals use the free and premium versions of Magnifi.
“There’s nothing there for people to hang around like a market,” Nair said. “Our goal was to create a market for investing from discovery to research to action.
“We have no incentive to get anyone to trade. We do not make money directly or indirectly from any type of trading there. Magnifi is therefore the world’s leading investment marketplace, powered by natural language to simplify finance and spread intelligence. We have an AI-based conversational assistant for people who use Magnifi. »
Financial Answers and the generosity of the data lake
The third component is Financial Answers, a data acquisition platform with three million subscribers to newsletters and financial media sites. Financial Answers also obtains its data through the acquisition of selected companies.
Together, the three entities feed data into a central data lake, Nair explained. What are people reading? What articles do they click on? What assessments did they perform?
“This lake of data is what drives personalization for the user, because you can’t personalize without data,” Nair said. “Ultimately, TIFIN is what I think will become the biggest first-party wealth and investment data. This is used to drive personalization. And it’s done in a way that allows the end individual to achieve a better state through commitment and results.
New technology, but this time for customization on the front-end
TIFIN addresses an area where most improvements have targeted back-end operations, Nair said. Companies focused on automating tasks that helped advisors but not their clients. Conversely, TIFIN focuses on the end customer and how advisors can deliver value propositions to them. They have incorporated components from other companies for the back and middle offices, but they focus on the front.
This is a great example of technology performing tasks that enable financial advisors to provide higher value services.
“We try to be that driver for all the intermediaries that bring value to the end customer,” Nair said. “There are low-touch versions of this, for example, in Magnifi. It’s there for people who weren’t working with intermediaries.
Social trends are the number one priority for young investors
Research capacity comes at an ideal time, just as younger generations of investors are paying close attention to the ethics of the companies in which they invest. Nair said some of their most popular search queries relate to causes such as Black Lives Matter and gender equality. It’s a perfect opportunity for advisors to help clients make socially responsible choices.
Along the same lines, Nair said TIFIN’s personalized donation technology has had a significant impact. Advisors can create donor-advised funds that engage the whole family. This promotes regular contact.
“All family members participate in this giving exercise, and through this they get to know their counselor, which otherwise would usually never happen,” Nair said. “And it’s a very natural and genuine way for them to build a relationship without them trying to sell to the customer’s children or grandchildren. Some of these social trends that are more prevalent among younger generations offer ways personalize them and connect with them.”
The future of wealth technology
Nair believes wealth will be part of every fintech offering in the not-too-distant future, much like many have loans today. This will lead incumbents to buy fintechs like JP Morgan did with 55ip. Look at payments, where fintechs are buying each other, with some even buying incumbents.
“Like your banks, you have neobanks. You have insurers; you have neoinsurers. In wealth too, you will only find neo versions of TAMPS and wealth platforms that have been created in the past,” Nair concluded.
“Asset managers work closely together to do some of this internally, some externally. So the trend we’re excited about is how the ecosystem from individual to asset manager advisor is changing due to the very early but fintech disruption that is happening.
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Tony Zerucha is a longtime contributor in the fintech and alt-fi spaces. Twice nominated for LendIt Journalism of the Year and winner in 2018, Tony has written over 2,000 original articles on blockchain, peer-to-peer lending, crowdfunding, and emerging technologies over the past seven years. He has moderated panels at LendIt, the CfPA Summit, and DECENT’s Unchained, a blockchain expo in Hong Kong.