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RIABiz

Oisin Breen

A Dublin native, Oisin has spent the last nine years living in Edinburgh, Scotland and the past three writing about finance, including one whirlwind year deep-sea diving into the world of RIAs, which he now can't get enough of. Prior to writing for RIABiz, Oisin was a jobbing FX and equities writer for a London-based trading firm, as well as a teacher, and remains a writer of long-form experimental poetry. Alongside his writing, Oisin continues to toil on a part-time basis in academia, where he is mired in a doctoral research topic into the structure of narrative. He's also married - to an Australian who tries her best to avoid temperatures over 68 degrees fahrenheit. They own four Scottish rabbits.

Articles written by Oisin Breen


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Vinay Nair: We have now completed the process to rightsize our cost structure for the current environment.

Tifin Group CEO slashes 10% of staff -- and his own pay -- to cut $10 million from annual 'burn' in the 30 days after $109-million 'D' raise

CEO Vinay Nair and eight other senior executives took a 20% pay cut, but Tifin continues to hire, and the software roll-up is open to making fresh acquisitions

June 14, 2022 – 12:06 AM

Urska Velikonja: We expect for these large asset managers to consider abortion in the same way they consider other social-policy issues.

Shorts: ESG forces Vanguard, BlackRock, SSGA to choose on abortion • Schwab uses money and brand to correct white-male CFP supermajority • S&P 1500 pensions overfunded despite underwhelming 2022 returns • Vanguard closes gap on BlackRock as top institutional manager • Musk puts Orion on Twitter map

Culture war envelops ESG. 'Big-three' face crisis on abortion rights • The population is 50.8% women, 13.4% Black, 18% Latinx, but 76.6% of financial planners are white men. • Schwab funds CFP effort to rebalance • S&P 1500 pension plans are running a $55 billion surplus • Vanguard nears BlackRock institutional asset sum • Daniel Crosby lures behavioral finance interest, via Diet Coke.

June 11, 2022 – 1:05 AM

Eric Clarke: Today, we start bringing Orion and Redtail together.

Orion speed-closes Redtail purchase in 48 days, so Eric Clarke can get right to work stacking it with four other M&A deals in two years at his Omaha mothership

Clarke now 'holds all the cards' to 'own the desktop' of hundreds of thousands of advisor firms, one consultant says, but analysts wonder whether Orion really has the 'bandwidth' to make a tech stack out of so many towering silos.

June 9, 2022 – 1:39 AM

George Tamer: Portfolio management is a mature category, but the opportunity to innovate remains massive.

An unprecedented wave of 'disruptive' competitors are challenging 'The Big Four' RIA performance reporting firms by thinking past 'the cloud' and bundles

Black Diamond, Orion Tamarac and Addepar built a $10 trillion mountain of AUA by taking RIAs to the cloud, but a number of firms are emerging to challenge the status quo.

June 2, 2022 – 3:50 AM

Larry Fink: I don't want to be the environmental police.

BlackRock to curb ESG 'social justice' proposals with its voting power this proxy season and embrace big oil, claiming Ukraine war, Russian embargo demand climate goals reset

The New York City manager of $9.6 trillion races to redefine -- and resuscitate -- reeling 'ESG' after the Ukraine war exposed perils of charging a premium fee to contain free market forces.

June 1, 2022 – 3:22 AM

David Fox: We're hiring out of school ... molding them into our vision of the perfect planner.

Goldman Sachs turns big page on United Capital with big changes for Joe Duran and FinLife, giving its home-grown executive money, mandate and HR muscle to create national RIA

The New York investment bank's radio silence on its staggering $750-million RIA purchase in 2019 comes to an end with the beginning of the David Fox era.

May 27, 2022 – 1:01 AM

Jessie Proudman: We’re building the right product for long-term investors as opposed to traders.

Betterment reveals that it now owns Seattle crypto firm and that it will be a 'centerpiece,' yet the deal timing means it could be a 'big blunder,' Morningstar analyst says

The New York City robo-advisor closed Makara deal in March, skipped any PR, and will Betterment-ize it for Summer launch; never mind the collapse of the token market

May 24, 2022 – 2:33 AM

Amy Lash: Like our clients, we think about performance over the longer-term.

Vanguard may be shorting much vaunted 'owners' of its low-cost index funds as it upshifts to more Wall Street-style exec-comp to thwart competitors and chase high-net-worth investors

Shareholder profits at the Malvern, Pa. company are being undercut by undisclosed millions in executive and staff pay raises as the company seeks to shore up its eroding value proposition.

May 15, 2022 – 7:15 PM

Bill Crager: If there was ever anything that we felt we needed to convey [or] announce, we would, of course, do that.

Envestnet go-private sale odds plummet after Bill Crager's answer to analyst's question over the possibility; stock craters, cutting chances of it happening to one-in-four, analyst says

Investors responded to the Envestnet CEO's remarks -- and analyst takes - of yesterday's earnings call by sending company shares down sharply, while president Stuart DePina's future role remains murky.

May 6, 2022 – 7:24 PM

Since Schwab and Salesforce last reported comity, the CRM maker has come to literally tower over the former in San Francisco but they have to see eye to eye to compete with a re-energized CRM maker in Sacramento.

Schwab and Salesforce proclaim fresh RIA data solidarity two days after Orion buys Redtail with RIA CRM data nirvana the merger's implicit promise

The two uneasy downtown San Francisco neighbors promise better cooperation soon for RIAs as Eric Clarke and Brian McLaughlin find common cause, and TDA RIAs get set to become Schwab RIAs in 2022.

April 29, 2022 – 11:25 PM

Freddy Martino says Vanguard axing of crypto fund access relates to 'honing core priorities.'

RIABiz Skinny: Vanguard purges a last vestige of crypto from its platform • Onramp raises cash lifeline after CEO kerfuffle • Max Schatzow questions whether Cathie Wood gets SEC hall pass • Schwab shares correct on earnings then get re-walloped 'sorting'

Malvern, Pa. giant does opposite of hedge crypto • Onramp lives on despite Tyrone Ross off ramp • RIA blogger sees SEC double standard • Schwab's revenues and 'sorting' have Wall Street out of sorts.

April 23, 2022 – 1:44 AM

Lawrence Calcano: 'The fact that other people haven't solved the problem... isn't that interesting. What's interesting is whether we think we can.'

Fresh off a $440 million raise, iCapital CEO Lawrence Calcano is ready to dream the impossible--to unite the alts industry in order to dominate it-- despite doubters who say it's a proven exercise in futility

Venture anchored by BlackRock, Blackstone, KKR, Apollo and the Carlyle Group may realize a dominant role by releasing a lingua franca to eradicate data protocol fragmentation.

April 22, 2022 – 2:10 AM

Sallie Krawcheck: When it started rolling, it was a force of nature, a f***ing force of nature.

After micro-fee subscriptions take off, Sallie Krawcheck pulls down $53 million in self-described B raise--then bites the hand of VCs that refuse to feed her chronically in-the-red company

The Ellevest CEO has a 3-million member community and $1.4 billion in AUM after eight years, but has had to make do while 98% of VC funds go to male-run companies, she asserts.

April 15, 2022 – 2:44 AM

Matt Brown: Acquisitions are very much top of mind.

Matt Brown banks $100 million for CAIS but gives up 10% stake as urgency to buy capabilities begins to surpass how much they cost

As iCapital presses its advantage and Joe Lonsdale threatens to enter the market, the CAIS CEO is bootstrapping nothing as the alts market finally starts to explode after years of crying wolf.

April 7, 2022 – 3:52 AM

David Solomon likes wealth management for its steady and predictable fees, and he's willing to pay transaction fees to get them.

After co-founder Rob Foregger departs NextCapital, the CEO turns around and sells the company to Goldman Sachs, which calls it 'another tool'

The Chicago 401(k) robo-advisor became a ‘plug-in’ versus a ‘platform,’ relegating it to a guest role, a pragmatic move, yet, perhaps, diminishing its destiny.

April 6, 2022 – 4:48 AM

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