The Full Story

The Challenge

Robertson Stephens needed technology that could support its clients' complex portfolios.

The Solution

Addepar delivered the analysis and reporting capabilities that the firm wanted. Now, Robertson Stephens and its clients have better, faster visibility into how events impact their portfolios.

The Result

Addepar’s game-changing power and flexibility are helping Robertson Stephens attract clients. Addepar is also helping the firm to persuade advisors to join its team. These advisors see that Addepar makes completing previously tedious tasks effortless—and can help them accelerate the growth of their business.

Robertson Stephens "Addepar is a game-changer. Clients were happy with their legacy technology, but when they see Addepar, they realize how clunky their old system is. It’s like the difference between a mid-market sedan and a high-end sports car." Joe Piazza / Chairman and CEO

The Challenge:

The Challenge: Solutions fall short

Robertson Stephens LLC, through its subsidiaries Robertson Stephens Advisors LLC, Robertson Stephens Partners LLC and Robertson Stephens Securities LLC offers investment services and advice to high net worth individuals, family offices, institutions and corporations. A staff of highly experienced professionals provide access to a global group of managers across a broad spectrum of appropriate asset classes.

Robertson Stephens wanted technology that would help its team provide analysis, assemble reports, and communicate with clients effectively and efficiently. Joe Piazza, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, was not optimistic they would find a solution that delivered the degree of speed, agility, and transparency it needed.

According to Piazza, “Prior to discovering Addepar, we thought of technology in our industry as relatively static and difficult to customize. Most reporting and analytical tools don’t function well, especially for complex portfolios. That’s a problem because the portfolios of high net worth individuals have become quite complex, with more asset classes, currencies, and countries represented. We expected to settle for a technology that was going to be a pain in the neck. Instead we found Addepar. It was a revelation.”

The Solution:

The Solution: the Power to exceed expectations

Working closely with Addepar during implementation, Robertson Stephens began using its customized solution for analysis and reporting. Clients now tap into information about their portfolios through a secure, online portal that reflects the Robertson Stephens brand and provides them an individualized view of their assets.

“Addepar lets us analyze portfolios the way we want.” says Piazza. “Some technologies force you into a linear view. With Addepar, we see complex portfolios as a matrix. You can look at portfolios vertically, horizontally and in depth. Addepar helps us understand the interplay of assets and how daily events impact a portfolio. There’s nothing else like it.”

Addepar is also helping Robertson Stephens track the managers it has chosen to invest in individual asset classes. The solution has been particularly useful in monitoring for “style drift,” – when a manager invests in assets outside their focus area. For example, when energy is under-performing, a manager responsible for energy investments may drift into technology investments, causing a portfolio to be over-invested in technology as the technology asset manager would be making similar investments.

“Addepar provides transparency into what the managers we’ve chosen are doing,” says Piazza. “We expect them to support our asset allocation model. If a manager drifts, we can see it and correct it right away.”

The Result:

The Result: standing out and attracting top clients and advisors

Robertson Stephens is growing its client base and team of advisors. Addepar is playing a key role by helping the new company both win new clients and attract successful advisors to its team. “Addepar is a game-changer,” reports Piazza. “Clients were happy with their legacy technology, but when we show them Addepar, suddenly they realize how clunky their old system is. It’s like the difference between a mid-market sedan and a high-end sports car.”

“Advisors are even more impressed with Addepar because they generally have a history of frustrating experiences with the alternatives, private equity and complex client structures,” says Piazza. “An Addepar demonstration usually plays a persuasive role in our recruiting efforts. During one demo, an advisor looked at the screen and asked, “Is this real?” It’s immediately evident how Addepar has transformed investment management technology – and they want it.”

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