Conferences

This section contains news and coverage about the dozens of conferences held in the advisory industry every year. Those conferences range from annual events put on by the big custodians to small hands-on workshops hosted by law firms, consultants and tech companies, among others. RIABiz can't cover all the conferences, but this page includes our stories about those we have written about.

We hope that getting a flavor of the different gatherings helps you decide which are worthwhile attending and — if you're in the conference business yourself — what clicks with attendees and what doesn't. Have a suggestion for a conference we should cover? Email me, Brooke Southall at brooke@riabiz.com.


Mike Sha (center): We’re not gonna disrupt a crusty industry. Discretion is the better part of valor for start-up people.

Schwab CTO's speech in NYC spotlights an RIA business addicted to innovation – with no fresh fix in sight

Timothy Heier set the lower-morale tone at In|Vest 2017 of a B2B industry waiting for a Mark Zuckerberg to push it forward again -- perhaps with artificial intelligence as the final frontier

July 20, 2017 — 9:37 PM UTC by Janice Kirkel

Brooke's Note: Conferences have many things going for them but not creativity and inspiration. The In|Vest conferences offered a chance to break out of the box by featuring thinkers and doers of innovation ahead of the asset monarchs and market- share mavens. The 2015 ...

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Mark Tibergien with his uber-millennial interviewer, Min Zhang, who got an answer to the question of how long he plans to stick around.

Part of futuristic Pershing Insite 2017 is Mark Tibergien letting RIABiz know that he is intensively grooming his own successors

The Pershing Advisor Solutions CEO came aboard in 2007 but he'll leave a much bigger, younger, more feminine, techier unit -- with more of a BNY Mellon feel to it

June 19, 2017 — 11:12 PM UTC by Guest Columnist Min Zhang

Brooke's Note: Bolstering RIAs' notion of Pershing as the stylistic and practical equivalent of a sensible pair of shoes, the Jersey City, N.J. custodian has long held its national conference in Hollywood, Fla., a lesser-known beachfront city up the AIA a piece from Miami ...

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Lukas Smart brought DFA fervor to a surprisingly self-critical smart beta conference.

The smart beta ETF industry gets blasted at swank Manhattan summit by an unlikely group of critics

The active-but-passive category soared from $200 billion to $620 billion in the past four years, but Rob Arnott and other big smart-beta names at Convene were not in a gloating mood

June 15, 2017 — 2:44 AM UTC by Janice Kirkel

Brooke's Note: Whoever the genius was who coined the term "smart beta" was smart, like a politician. In a sense, the whole category starts with the promise that you can get something for nothing. But smart beta ETFs have few critics, perhaps because the ...

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John Castelly: A June 9 deadline is just like when we were back in school, thinking we would have a substitute teacher, so we didn’t do our homework, but the real teacher showed up instead.

How a Personal Capital exec electrified the NorCal FPA crowd with DOL details, relegating Jeff Gundlach and other stars to a dimmer sparkle

John Castelly elicited a school days nightmare leaving the Bond King to warn about the indexing bubble and Tim Kochis to caution against seeking for yourself in succession search

June 1, 2017 — 6:39 PM UTC by Guest Columnist Timothy D. Welsh

Brooke's Note: No matter how great it is to run an RIA, it always comes with a problem: There are no men and women in back rooms assigned to warn you about incoming meteors. Instead RIAs go to conferences and find out from each ...

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Fred Reish: You need the data in your file.

DOL fiduciary rule's upcoming September surprise'll send brokers memo-izing -- or else -- says Fred Reish in Nashville to a spellbound room

The Drinker Biddle attorney's invariably even tone gained inflection as he spoke of how brokers can only invoke BICE exemptions to go off DOL script by zealous, proactive documentation

May 25, 2017 — 7:53 PM UTC by Graham Thomas

Brooke's Note: People say certain things, and in certain ways, in front of different people. It is perhaps the best reason, from a content standpoint, to attend a conference. Graham Thomas was -- full disclosure -- in Nashville as an RIABiz advertising executive but he took notes ...

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Kunal Kapoor: This is a future of advice conference.

Jack Bogle's ICI grumbles and Kunal Kapoor's 'future' mode make Morningstar's 2017 conference sparkle with an uber relevance

The Vanguard founder made a dig at ICI and the Morningstar CEO put RIA bloggers on even agenda-slot footing with BlackRock CEO and IBM's Sironi

May 4, 2017 — 3:17 AM UTC by Graham Thomas

Brooke's Note: If you make a self-important claim like: This is a 'future of financial advice conference,' you had better be prepared to back it up -- especially before a sophisticated audience that knows a retrofitted mutual fund event when it sees one. Word is that Kunal ...

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SSG software chief Dan Skiles makes his creative contribution to an advisor-crowdsourced painting.

With Pershing as canvas, Dan Skiles and Peter Mangan paint a picture of a budding RIA custodian

Shareholders Service Group has 1,500 RIA firms and counting and displayed a satisfying air of permanence at its San Diego conference

May 1, 2017 — 4:14 PM UTC by Guest Columnist Tim Welsh

Brooke's Note: Building up Shareholders Service Group has taken a long time. But the product of that patience may be a sort of masterpiece -- an RIA custodian that serves small firms with the same love as big ones and which doesn't compete with its RIAs. These qualities ...

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Jon Stein, flanked by Maureen Thompson of CFA and Betterment associate counsel Seth Rosenbloom, marking the envisaged starting day of the DOL rule.

After putting big chips on DOL fiduciary rule, Betterment hosts funereal event to mark the April 10 Go Day That Wasn't

CEO Jon Stein sat shoulder to shoulder with CFP Board and Consumer Federation of America guests and held court with CNNMoney, Wall Street Journal and Consumer Reports reporters

April 13, 2017 — 6:50 PM UTC by Janice Kirkel

Brooke's Note: Betterment is best known for its B-to-C robo. RIA types know it's an RIA business. But the New York robo's interesting side bet is its 401(k) platform that its founders claim to have built after they became so disgusted, as ...

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Dashing to catch a plane, Pershing's Lisa Dolly updated me on the company's COO search. ​

The 10 takeaways Chip Roame imparted at his Tiburon CEO Summit in NYC and other items I gleaned by gumshoe reporting

From the Battery Ritz common space, disembodied text and email recipients appear in human form

April 6, 2017 — 5:26 PM UTC by Janice Kirkel

Brooke's Note: The best club is that one that won't have you as a member. That applies to conferences. So RIABiz has kept up a pretty good record of attendance at the Tiburon CEO Summit -- even since the event stopped inviting reporters. But to some ...

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Joe Cianciolo [with Simon Roy]: The future is the next five to 10 years. The millennials don't have that much money.

Why FutureAdvisor orphaned its B2C book of business, how post-Invesco Jemstep is doing and other learnings at CFA Society's robo-panel in San Francisco

Since BlackRock acquired it, the $152-million robo has gone full-on for big enterprises with big books of boomers and joined a chorus of robo-owners sick of millennial bullcrap

April 4, 2017 — 5:38 PM UTC by Brooke Southall

Brooke's Note: This was an elegant San Fran event of artisan cheeses and embiggening surroundings. It was the CFA Society's first go at having a financial technology event and enthusiasm ran high. But the event might have also been subtitled: how do we ...

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T3 organizer Joel Bruckenstein (l.) set the stage for a smorgasbord of announcements, acquisitions and integrations.

An e-marriage of Schwab and Fidelity, a reflective Ron Carson and good jargon-bashing made T3 take off like that helicopter outside

Addepar and FolioDynamix team up, Fidelity defends its robo-AMP and Carson tells why the Carson Wealth-LPL partnership failed -- and what blame he takes

February 21, 2017 — 6:52 PM UTC by Graham Thomas

Brooke's Note: Graham Thomas, Chicago-based advertising chief for RIABiz, gets sent to T3 with marching orders to deliver hard news devoid of any damn jargon from an event where nary a non-jargoned sentence is spoken. How he works his way out of that box in ...

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Tim Hockey: There is an advice continuum with do-it-yourselfers on one end and advisor directed investors on the other. In the middle we don’t want to give them a reason to leave, so we have to offer more choices.

Tim Hockey invites channel-conflict question before TD Ameritrade's RIAs, sets good tone at LINC conference

New CEO plants question with his own PR interrogator, relieving tension, albeit with a stock answer, and allowing a successful event to unfold

February 6, 2017 — 6:22 PM UTC by Guest Columnist Tim Welsh

Brooke's Note: Our Robin Reilly was supposed to be in San Diego to help write but she got struck down by the flu. Fortunately for us, Tim Welsh, in early-season form, has flown so many miles that no amount of recycled Southwest Airlines air ...

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Peter Mallouk owns a $21-billion RIA already growing with organic ferocity. Then Tony Robbins shows up and whoosh.

The 10 RIABiz stories advisors connected with most deeply in 2016 and how hubris and humility ran amok in this didn't-see-it-coming year

How did Aequitas swamp CONCERT? Power outages at LPL, Cetera and Wealthfront? Adolescent robo problems? And was that Tony Robbins hawking his money book ... again?

December 28, 2016 — 5:54 PM UTC by Dina Hampton

Brooke's Note: Choosing which articles were of greatest interest to RIABiz readers in 2016 was easy because a Google robot  measures the final results of your reading output.  We then refresh your human memory about why the story was so irrestistible at the time. Big ...

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RIAs went to the belly of the options beast.

RIAs get schooled on how to cut out the greediest middlemen -- insurers and hedgers -- at an event at Chicago Board Options Exchange

Options Industry Council panel showcased success stories and product pitchers of off-the-rack options automation and our caffeinated reporter swears it was all in a layman's intellectual grasp

December 19, 2016 — 6:47 PM UTC by Graham Thomas

Brooke's Note:  We prevailed upon Graham Thomas to look in on an Options Industry Council panel to find out just what software and determination has been used to make options comprehensible to English majors. The big takeaway is that it's getting cheaper and easier to hedge a portfolio ...

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Daniel Kern: Looking forward, we spend a lot and need to do more with marketing, both brand and message.

Seven RIAs tell what big project they spent money for in 2016 -- and why

Graham Thomas corralled advisor principals at MarketCounsel's Summit in Miami Beach and got some intense answers

December 16, 2016 — 8:11 PM UTC by Graham Thomas

Brooke's Note: Words like journalist, writer and reporter get thrown around interchangeably. Somehow "reporter" sounds the least prestigious, but it shouldn't be. It's at the heart of journalism. Reporting is asking the right questions to the right people -- and making sure that you get an answer to ...

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