Robo-Advisors 101 Course

General

Program Description

Traditional wealth management/ PFM world was shaken with the advent of so-called “robo advisors” in recent years. ‘Robo-advisor’ is a generic term used to describe a new class of investment advisory service that is offered online, is automated and based on algorithms. This new class of advice started as an offering to occupy the space between self-directed (DIY) investors and human financial advisor recommended investment advice. Further, it was considered an ideal advice vehicle for digital savvy millennials. While several robo-advisor startups entered the PFM marketplace, only a few remain standing and have cumulatively attracted only a small fraction of the overall investable assets. But, these robo-advisors have had a bigger impact on the industry. They have forced traditional investment advisory firms to evolve and provide automated, low-cost investment advice options. Further, robo-advisors have themselves evolved to cater to the B2B market as well as to other areas like retirement plan advice and education plan advice. All this only goes to show that automated advice is still is in its nascent stages and is here to stay in one form or another.

In this course, we will cover various topics related to automated investment advice including:

  • What are Robo-Advisors?
  • Why does it matter?
  • How automated investment advice platform works
  • Key players and regulation
  • What to expect in the coming years
  • Making a business case (Build vs. Buy)

At the end of the course, students will have a better appreciation for the evolving Personal Finance Management (PFM) landscape and its potential. They will understand how automated investment advice products work at its core and what’s needed - building blocks and stakeholders – to offer an effective ‘robo-advisor’ product. They will also become aware of options and opportunities to become involved in this sector.

This introductory course is for anyone who wants to learn about automated investment advice. This is ideal for budding FinTech entrepreneurs, current financial advisors/ RIAs as well as professionals working in traditional financial product distribution firms (broker-dealers, custodians, banks, insurance, and asset management companies).

Your Instructor

Amilcar Chavarria is a financial technology entrepreneur with experience in fixed income, personal finance, risk management, and private placements.

He is currently the CEO of FinTech Portfolio, a fast-growing network of FinTech Entrepreneurs that provides Innovation Services to Financial Institutions. In 2015, he started FundPaaS, a funding platform as a service that can convert any website into a crowdfunding portal. Prior to that, Amilcar was on the leadership team of a venture-backed startup that launched the leading payments and compliance engine for crowdfunding portals where he increased client growth by 300%. His portfolio companies include a “Compliant ICO as a Service” which was first to market in incorporating the latest financial securities laws and cryptocurrencies (e.g. ERC20 utility tokens).

In 2016, Amilcar started one of the first online FinTech School which has notable clients such as Moody's Analytics, IBM and The Wharton School of Business. They have also hosted Chinese delegations from Tsinghua University and the Ningbo Municipality. In 2012, Amilcar started one of the earliest Robo-Advisors in the US and has been invited to speak in China during the launch of the 1st Robo-Advisor by Guangfa Bank. In December of 2016, Amilcar was featured on the cover story of CFA Magazine and Bankless Times. Amilcar has had prestigious clients such as Huatai Securities, Insurance Association of China and Huaxi.

Amilcar has held a variety of senior roles in corporate finance, product management, business development and investment analytics at well-renowned investment banks and asset managers like Goldman Sachs and BlackRock. He's also a graduate of The Wharton School Of Business and a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering from Tulane University.

Class Curriculum

  • Robo-Advisors 101
    • Start Module 1: What are Robo-Advisors (17:35)
    • Start Module 2: Key Trends in Robos & FinTech (12:30)
    • Start Module 3: Vendors, Business Models & Monetization (27:09)
    • Start Module 4: Challenges & Leading the Digital Transformation (29:53)
    • Start Post-Course Satisfaction Survey

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?

The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.

What are the prerequisites for the course?

There are no prerequisites to take this course! Students from all backgrounds are encouraged to take this course.

Last updated February 2019

About the School

FinTech is shaping the future of finance and global banking with technology. Financial Institutions want to evolve but need help incorporating FinTech into their business model. Technology professiona ... Read More

FinTech is shaping the future of finance and global banking with technology. Financial Institutions want to evolve but need help incorporating FinTech into their business model. Technology professionals want to help Financial Institutions get ready for Finance 2.0 but often lack adequate business context. Entrepreneurs are trying to disrupt existing business models, but need help turning their ideas into viable products and/or solutions. Read less
San Francisco