Online investing and wealth management service Wealthsimple announced it has acquired ShareOwner Investments, Canadian’s first automated investment manager – a company that has been in business since 1987.
ShareOwner, founded by a University of Windsor finance professor, has provided independent investment education and low-cost investing services to retail investors for nearly three decades. In that time, it has been a forerunner in the financial industry with innovations like fractional shares, dividend reinvestment programs, and model portfolios.
Since its launch in September 2014, Toronto-based Wealthsimple now manages more than 10,000 clients and $400 million in client assets. It also owns one of Canada’s 14 discount brokerages.
This acquisition of ShareOwner will make Wealthsimple the only automated investing service that provides an end-to-end investment experience – this ranges from trade execution and custody, to portfolio construction and advice.
“This deal accelerates our mission to make smart investing accessible to everybody,” said Wealthsimple CEO Michael Katchen. “It means we can move faster to bring innovation to Canada’s financial industry, and we’re adding complementary technology, like fractional shares that will help deliver a superior experience to our clients.”
Following the acquisition, ShareOwner will continue to operate its discount brokerage service under the leadership of CEO Bruce Seago. It will also be supporting some back office operations for Wealthsimple.