Earlier this month Vancouver-based WealthBar announced that they've helped Canadians plan over $500 million of their investment assets, a milestone that suggests robo advisors and automated advice is here to stay.
That’s quite an accomplishment for a firm that opened its doors slightly more than one year ago and only went nationwide in early January.
"We'd like to help all Canadians understand how to save money effectively and efficiently," Tea Nicola, CEO of WealthBar
, said announcing its nationwide push in early January. "It's about knowing how and when you will reach your goals as well as getting the right advice to make the best decisions whenever personal circumstances change."
Ever since robo-advisors started showing up on the Canadian investment advisory landscape it’s been a contentious issue amongst full-service advisors. Some for, some against, but all curious to see where the industry is headed in the months and years to come.
“Though most advisors are familiar with digital advice, a relatively small percentage of advisors are currently using this technology,” said Ben Harrison, head of business development and relationship management at Pershing LLC. “The biggest opportunity we see for transformation is for advisors to automate low-value tasks, expand their reach and profitability.”
That’s the thinking behind Power Corporation’s $30-million investment in Wealth Simple
, the Toronto robo-advisor founded by tech startup guru Michael Katchen.
“The financial services industry is changing as many millennials desire smart, transparent, and low-fee services,” said Wealthsimple CEO and founder Michael Katchen in its press release announcing Power Financial’s investment last April. “We are excited to be at the forefront of this change in Canada and Power Financial’s investment demonstrates a huge vote of confidence in our team and business.”
Is WealthBar’s achievement a tipping point? Perhaps not, but it’s a big deal just the same.