News, Vision & Voice for the Advisory Community


Riskalyze co-founder and CTO steps down; Aaron Klein hires a headhunter to replace him and nab a CMO, too

Right out of Berkeley, Matt Pistone was serious engineering talent with little experience. The new person needs to bring a track record.

Tuesday, March 22, 2022 – 1:12 AM by Brooke Southall
no description available
(Matt Pistone and) Aaron Klein: '[Matt] was the perfect co-founder.'

Riskalyze needs a new chief technology officer -- and is down to one co-founder --now that Matt Pistone has departed the firm and now lists Seattle as his home address.

Donna White
Donna White at August Venture is leading the search.

Co-founder and CEO Aaron Klein's LinkedIn account contained a post that the Auburn, Calif., leader in risk software for financial advisors had hire Donna White at August Venture Talent in Los Angeles to hire a new CTO -- and a chief marketing officer for good measure.

Pistone's tenure at Riskalyze goes back to 2011 when -- almost straight out of UC Berkeley -- he and Klein were the firm's only two staff.

Klein is pretty sure he'll hire somebody with more experience for the CTO role, this time around, to oversee 75 technical staff in Poland and Auburn.

'After eleven years, he was ready for his next adventure, and our next CTO will be both the excellent technical leader that Matt was, and an experienced people leader who knows how to build teams at billion-dollar scale," he says. See: Riskalyze replaces Lori Hardwick with Laurie Schultz at board chair and publicly tells her -- and the RIA industry -- it's moved the goalposts to a $1-billion valuation

Pistone is enjoying an exploration phase of life after a long period of focus, he says by email.

"I was just ready for a bit of a change, and I've got a few ideas I want to explore. In the months since departing my full time role I've wandered into a handful of consulting projects here and there, some in fintech and some not, and it's been a lot of fun to see the things incredibly smart people are working on now!"

Engineer's engineer

Pistone's technical prowess was enough to propel Riskalyze to its market leading position but also to execute a big liquidity event for the firm at a $300-million valuation. See: Riskalyze de-risks by cashing out investors at a $300-million-plus valuation to British mega-investor, but Aaron Klein is keeping big skin in the game

Iraklis Kourtidis
Iraklis Kourtidis: 'I was very impressed when I interacted with Matt.'

Klein declined to say whether Pistone cashed out during the recapitalization with Hg Capital.

"I can't comment on Matt's personal finances — I'll just stick to what I've said previously about mine," Klein wrote.

"It's true that I am the only co-founder still at Riskalyze, and I rolled the majority of my stake into the recapitalized firm in the transaction with our new partners at Hg."

Pistone is an engineer's engineer, according to Iraklis Kourtidis, CEO of Rowboat Advisors, who helped build Wealthfront's investing capabilities and whose firm sells technology to Riskalyze. 

"He is decidedly not a meetings-and-Powerpoint-only type CTO," he says. "When it comes to technology and developers, I consider myself an 'elitist,' and I have to say I was very impressed when I interacted with Matt and his team."

Klein agrees.

"We were his first job out of college," he says by email. "His high school physics teacher recommended him to help build the first prototype that became Riskalyze. (That physics teacher ended up working for Matt at Riskalyze many years later!)
"He was the perfect co-founder in terms of his ability to create something out of nothing, and scale up our infrastructure to serve tens of thousands of advisors and deliver millions of Risk Numbers to clients. Nobody could have done that better."

Big expectations

Klein is also hiring a CMO because his senior vice president of marketing, Justin Boatman, got promoted to chief product officer.

Justin Boatman
Justin Boatman takes over as chief product officer.
Big expectations will also come with the CMO position, Klein writes in LinkedIn.
"Our next Chief Marketing Officer will bring extensive experience building demand generation engines for rapidly scaling companies," he says.
Pistone begins his next chapter by revving down his engine but staying in touch.
"Matt transitioned out as CTO, though he's still around and available to consult for us," Klein says. "He finally took the vacation I've been hounding him to take and went on a three week hiking trip."









Related Moves

Riskalyze replaces Lori Hardwick with Laurie Schultz at board chair and publicly tells her -- and the RIA industry -- it's moved the goalposts to a $1-billion valuation

The Auburn, Calif., firm's new chair already took one risk software firm to unicorn status and promises to 'do what it takes.'

November 24, 2021 – 11:12 PM

Lori Hardwick steps down as AI Labs president and steps up as a gunslinging paladin for Riskalyze and other firms in new gig economy consulting role

The co-founder went to the Tiburon CEO Summit in April and came away with four big consulting gigs that morphed into a new career

June 13, 2019 – 2:48 AM

After Riskalyze raised a pile of cash, it went shopping for a chief technology officer and found him at Apex Clearing

The Auburn, Calif., risk software maker is undergoing a shift to enterprises and nabs Josh Gray from the Dallas firm.

August 10, 2022 – 2:25 AM

Wealthfront's unlikely tapping of Sheila Bair and Tom Curry signals likely push to gain a bank charter, analysts say

The Redwood City robo-advisor's addition of two renowned former chief banking regulators brings legitimacy and guidance that could lead to a margin-fattening bank charter and help solve the robo-advisor's problem of high client acquisition costs.

December 31, 2020 – 4:37 AM

Mentioned in this article:

Tech: Other
Top Executive: Aaron Klein

Alex Brewington

Alex Brewington

March 22, 2022 — 4:32 AM
This is exciting. I've heard good things about August Venture Talent. It will be interesting to see who is brought in.
Steve Laskey

Steve Laskey

March 22, 2022 — 8:43 PM
This is some grade A spin from riskalyze.

RIABiz Directory

The Industry Sourcebook for RIAs

   |    LISTING

RIABiz Directory sponsored by:

Directory Sponsor Logo