Last week at the T3 Advisor Conference, I had the pleasure of kicking off the event with the first keynote. We launched Riskalyze Premier, and announced the upcoming next-generation Autopilot platform.
We’re incredibly excited about the Autopilot announcement, and it generated a lot of buzz and analysis in the industry. On the one hand, Michael Kitces tweeted that it could spell the end of TAMPs; on the other hand, Craig Iskowitz wrote that we had become one ourselves.
My view is somewhere between eliminating and joining that space (tongue in cheek), so here are a few quick thoughts.
We have always done our best work when we create a new space, instead of trying to enter someone else’s space. Example: instead of building the 25th risk tolerance questionnaire, we built the world’s first risk alignment platform and we still win 77% of the customers we talk with because nobody can match the depth and breadth of what we do in aligning risk between clients and their portfolios.
With the next-generation Autopilot platform, we wanted to do much the same thing. While Autopilot had its roots in robo, we took a big step back and said “what problem does the advisor actually need to solve?” And the answer was clear — “I make this decision in Riskalyze, why can’t I click a button to implement it in Riskalyze?”
The 26% of our advisors who prefer the full service managed account platform already solve the “implementation” step by working with our great partners at SEI, AssetMark, Envestnet, CLS and many others.
The other 74% of our advisors — the do-it-yourselfers who want to control the portfolio, control the custody situation, and wouldn’t sign a co-advisor, sub-advisor or solicitation agreement to save their lives—are the ones we decided to focus on with the next-generation Autopilot platform.
These advisors desperately want to move up the automation stack, but they aren’t willing to give up portfolio control, re-paper client accounts, or sign on a co-advisor in order to get it. They feel that robs them of the personalization they’ve promised their clients.
Let’s be clear — the advisors in that market segment simply aren’t prospective customers for a TAMP. They’ve heard the managed account message over and over, and there’s a reason they aren’t willing to make that decision at this point for their businesses. These are precisely the advisors we are targeting with the world’s first automated account platform.
So don’t be surprised to see us continuing to partner with some of the industry’s best TAMPs and managed account platforms, while working to bring better automation and choice to the do-it-yourselfers. We don’t view that as inconsistent or competitive; to the contrary, the Autopilot Partner Store is a great way for these asset managers to connect with advisors they’ve never had the opportunity to talk with before!
To the extent there are minor overlaps, that’s pretty normal in our industry. The truth is that this market is massive — it totals in the trillions of dollars. There is plenty of room for many different approaches to solving the asset management problem. It’s not a zero sum game.
I hope that helps you understand our strategy, and see how our product roadmap fits together with the partnerships we’ve carefully built in our industry. We look forward to serving advisors on both sides of this fence for a long time to come.