The RIA Digital Assets Council founded by Ric Edelman is expanding its educational resources to serve the entire financial planning industry.
The organization announced Thursday that it has rebranded to reflect its expansion with a new name — Digital Assets Council of Financial Professionals — and will serve not only registered investment advisers but broker-dealers, wirehouses, institutional investors, family offices, trust companies, banks and insurance companies.
“We’re receiving requests for help from every sector of the financial services industry,” said Edelman, who founded the organization three years ago. “It’s no longer just financial advisers who are interested. Compliance officers, investment committees and HR are all asking for help. This has grown beyond the RIAs we initially set out to serve, so we needed a new name that reflects our larger audience.”
DACFP now serves all financial advisers, including those licensed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. and insurance regulators.
The program is rolling out as cryptocurrency nears an adviser tipping point, with some still weighing the risks and rewards of crypto before adding the asset class to clients’ portfolios.
“Digital assets continue to gain prominence in the marketplace,” said DACFP President Don Friedman. “Financial services organizations are struggling to determine how to offer clients new investment opportunities in this asset class and how to train their advisers. DACFP was created precisely for this purpose, and the demand for our services is huge.”
In April, DACFP launched its certificate program, which allows advisers to add blockchain and digital asset expert to their list of credentials. Advisers have historically shied away from digital assets like Bitcoin because of their volatility, but demand from both retail and institutional investors is set to propel cryptocurrencies toward further gains.
About 10% of financial advisers currently recommend cryptocurrency holdings to at least some clients, according to a recent white paper produced by Grayscale Investments in partnership with InvestmentNews Research. However, within five years, 44% of advisers expect to be working with cryptocurrencies, according to the study.
Seventy-seven percent of advisers not currently working with cryptocurrency said greater access to information about the market could change their mind, the study found.
That backdrop demonstrates the “urgent need for more education and understanding,” according to the Grayscale white paper. “When it comes to learning about investment opportunities, while it’s possible to be late to the game, it’s certainly never too early to start.”
DACFP is the education partner for blockchain and digital assets for the Financial Planning Association, the CFP Board, NAPFA, XY Planning Network, QUAD-A, the Money Management Institute and the Investment Advisers Association.
Andrew is half-human, half-gamer. He’s also a science fiction author writing for BleeBot.