Franklin Templeton has tapped Singapore-based wealthtech Bambu, and Apex Clearing to launch a new turnkey robo-adviser, Tango, in an increasingly competitive digital advice space.
The robo-adviser is designed to enable advisers to execute on two major trends this year: hyper personalization and goal-based wealth management for clients, according to the announcement Thursday. Tango is likely to be compelling to advisers that are underserved by large custodians, according to a company spokesperson.
Franklin Templeton will leverage its proprietary Goals Optimization Engine, which the asset manager launched in September, as the portfolio management technology. GOE uses machine learning to automate financial plans for investors and re-allocates assets to increase or decrease risk in portfolios as needed.
Apex’s platform will facilitate trading and custody for the robo-adviser, while Bambu’s cloud-based platform will facilitate a white-label software service so wealth managers can launch digital advice platforms with their own logos across websites and materials.
Through the partnership, Bambu has integrated with Apex’s APIs that include new account opening, automated customer account transfer systems, funding and trading. Firms interested can implement Tango without upfront technology costs in approximately eight to 10 weeks, according to the announcement.
Franklin Templeton is evolving their services to try and increase its value proposition to advisers beyond just asset management, according to Backend Benchmarking’s head of research David Goldstone.
“Asset management is an increasingly commoditized business, both advisors and their providers are assessing their value proposition and what other value-add services they can offer,” he said. “The important question for Franklin Templeton is whether these tools help advisers increase efficiency and improve the client experience while still maintaining their personalized services.”
This year’s new normal has digital advice platforms experiencing increases in account openings due in part to the market volatility sparked by COVID-19, a trend Franklin Templeton will hope to benefit from.
Independent robo-advisers Wealthfront and Betterment both reported increases in account openings since the market sell-off began of 68% and 25%, respectively, according to Backend Benchmarking. TD Ameritrade, too, saw new-account openings for its automated investing platform jump 150% during the second quarter, from the same period a year ago.
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