What do LPL Financial, Dynasty Financial Partners and Mercer Advisors Inc. have in common?
A new chief technology officer.
All three firms hired or appointed chief technology officers this month in moves to ramp up innovation and technology products for registered investment advisers. The recent hires come at a time when the fastest-growing RIAs are embracing technology tools at higher rates than their peers, according to a Charles Schwab study.
LPL Financial, the nation’s largest independent broker-dealer, announced Friday that Greg Gates has been named managing director and CTO, effective immediately. Gates succeeds Scott Seese, who is departing LPL following an extended leave of absence to care for a family member with an advanced illness, according to the announcement. Gates had served as interim head of technology since February.
Gates, who joined LPL in 2018, will oversee all aspects of LPL’s technology and systems applications, leading the firm’s efforts to deliver a differentiated technology experience for LPL advisers, RIAs and institutions, according to the announcement. Gates will report directly to LPL President and CEO Dan Arnold. Gates’ fintech management experience includes prior roles at PayPal and Bank of America.
“Since joining the firm, Greg has been integral to helping us improve the quality and speed-to-market of the technology solutions we provide to our clients, increasing the value we deliver to advisors for every dollar we spend on technology,” Arnold said in a statement.
On Thursday, Dynasty Financial Partners announced the appointment of two new fintech executives, Frank Coates as CTO and Taylor Howard as chief digital officer. Both executives will be based in St. Petersburg, Florida, and will report directly to Ed Swenson, chief operating officer of Dynasty.
“Frank Coates brings over 20 years of innovative and creative solutions specifically to the wealth management space. Frank will lead the way in technology for high-end RIAs,” Swenson said in a statement. “In addition, Taylor will build out Dynasty’s digital architecture and artificial intelligence capabilities — a key area for Dynasty in the future.”
Coates joins Dynasty from Envestnet, where he was executive managing director and co-group president of Envestnet Analytics. In January 2020, Envestnet made a minority investment in Dynasty to launch a new product it calls the Advisor Services Exchange.
Prior to joining Dynasty, Howard led the artificial intelligence, application engineering, digital workplace, and data analytics practices at AgileThought, a digital transformation and consulting firm.
Last Tuesday, Mercer Advisors, an RIA managing $31 billion in assets, announced that Christine Cataldo, former chief operations and technology officer for Edelman Financial Engines, had joined Mercer as chief technology and digital officer. Cataldo spent more than 17 years at Edelman Financial Engines, one of the largest independent RIA firms.
Mercer also announced the appointment of a new chief marketing officer, Gary Foodim, who was formerly the CMO for Strategic Financial Solutions and a consumer marketing executive at Condé Nast, where he oversaw consumer marketing for many of Condé Nast’s most iconic brands, including The New Yorker and Vogue.
Dave Welling, CEO of Mercer Advisors, said in a statement that the new hires are a part of Mercer’s aggressive growth goals, which place the RIA on track to manage $75 billion in client assets by 2025.
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