SAN FRANCISCO – AdventConnect - September 8, 2014 – Advent Software, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADVS) today at its annual client conference in Las Vegas, NV shared a preview of the next generation of its Black Diamond wealth management platform, which marks a major step in its evolution from a pioneer of cloud-based portfolio management and reporting technology to a full-featured wealth management platform. In addition to its industry leading reporting solutions the Black Diamond platform also offers an intuitive, native rebalancing application, firm and business intelligence reporting, data mining, and a dedicated service model designed to provide growing, sophisticated advisory firms with a solution that enhances the service they provide their clients and boosts firm productivity so they can grow with scale.
“Black Diamond’s roots are in empowering advisory firms by providing elegant technology solutions combined with great service to help solve the complex problems of advising clients and running a growing wealth management business,” said Dave Welling, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Black Diamond. “This next generation platform - what some of our clients are calling ‘Black Diamond 4.0’ - is a testament to Advent’s deep commitment to helping our advisory clients thrive.”
Founded in 2003, Advent’s Black Diamond redefined advisory reporting through its intuitive, dynamic portfolio management and reporting application. In 2010, Black Diamond launched BlueSky, the second generation of its industry leading application, which now supports over 565 advisory firms who manage over $266 billion in assets on the platform. In June of 2011, Black Diamond was acquired by Advent Software and has leveraged Advent’s deep experience in portfolio accounting and data management to dramatically expand its network of relationships with financial institutions for aggregation of custodial data as well as third party data for benchmarks, fixed income characteristics, and other reference data. Black Diamond’s new platform and latest enhancements leverage new cloud, mobile, and social technology as well as expand platform functionality well beyond its roots in advisory reporting.
The Black Diamond platform will include not only an increase in breadth of functionality but also a furthering of its commitment to integration with custodians and other third party technology. The new platform will enable a revolutionary integration approach where advisors can use the Black Diamond platform to publish or consume data or content to or from other systems.
New Technology-Enriched Investor Experience Coming Soon: Investor Portal,
Document Vault, and Communications Tools
Black Diamond’s new platform will include a complete redesign of the online investor experience that will empower advisors to tailor their story to each of their clients. The new investor experience, which will be previewed at the conference and available early next year, will include a revamped investor portal that can be tailored to each individual client and be delivered through a web browser, tablets, phones, or other mobile devices. Core to the new investor experience is the expansion of capabilities to support a broader wealth management dialogue with clients, which led to the creation of a bi-directional document vault to help support the advisor-client-advisor workflow. Advisors will be able to post reports, financial planning documents, market commentary, and forms for clients to sign and return. A communication and notification system will leverage detailed client data or characteristics to target and tailor messages to each client by custodian, investment model, specific investment or any other data element in the system or criteria established by the advisor.
“We are excited about the next generation of the Black Diamond platform – it’s great to have a partner who understands the industry so well and has the technology and talent to anticipate our needs and build for the future. We are looking forward to seeing how the new investor portal, documents vault, and communications tools can help us interact with clients even more effectively, with a whole new level of personalization in our online and mobile interactions,” said Chris Casdia, Chief Compliance Officer, Homrich Berg.
“Our clients have always been co-architects of the technology that we deliver, and our new investor experience was developed based on years of experience serving advisors and listening to what they need to facilitate deeper engagement with their clients,” said Welling. “Our clients want technology that tells a story beyond investment performance to highlight the value they’re providing to their clients in their financial lives. This is about providing a technology solution that has the same depth, flexibility, and personalization that advisors can deliver when they meet with a client face-to-face.”
Redefining Rebalancing: Intuitive, Native Rebalancing Application Builds
In the past year, adoption of Black Diamond’s native Rebalancer has more than doubled. The Black Diamond team began development of the rebalancing application shortly after the acquisition by Advent with the vision of providing a robust, intuitive rebalancing solution that could enable advisors to rebalance portfolios at a household level across multiple custodians. In the past twelve months, Advent has invested in Black Diamond’s Rebalancer to streamline workflows and significantly deepen functionality to support the needs of its growing client base. New functionality includes support of firm-level rebalancing of models as well as client-driven workflows, tax-aware rebalancing, and strategic or tactical rebalancing.
“We’ve designed the rebalancing solution within the Black Diamond platform based on client feedback to make it intuitive within the native platform and consistent in look, feel, and workflow, as well as easy to implement, and tailored to the unique rebalancing workflows of an advisory firm,” said Welling.
Firm and Enterprise Management: Data Mining and Firm Reporting
At the conference, the Black Diamond team also unveiled the most recent enhancements to its data mining application, a robust data query and analysis tool. New and improved data mining functionality on the Black Diamond platform includes enhanced filtering capabilities and data fields to get desired data points. Advisors can query, access, and analyze their data in high-quality, aggregated formats from an agile, intuitive tool within the platform, providing efficiencies for compliance monitoring, research, ad hoc reporting, and business intelligence. Coming soon will be the ability to extract time-series data and cost basis data across all holdings. Since its initial launch last year, nearly two-thirds of all Black Diamond clients use the platform’s data mining capabilities.
“We use data mining and other recent enhancements as the base for our
business intelligence and risk reporting,” said Eric Jardine, Senior Portfolio
Manager at BakerAvenue Asset Management. “Flexible and simple tools like this
enable our technology systems to work well together. We can now easily measure
against our goals in less time.”
Backing Technology with Service and a Growing Community
Advent’s investment in new technology for the Black Diamond platform is
rivaled by a parallel investment in service, operations, training, and
implementation teams to help advisors get the most value out of the technology.
Black Diamond has more than doubled its service team staffing in the last three
years. The service team now represents more than 60 percent of the Black Diamond
Advent also announced the continued growth of Advent Direct® Community, its new online client experience that was announced at AdventConnect 2013. Black Diamond clients can now access the rapidly growing community of more than 10,000 registered individuals, of which more than 65 percent are active users. Since its launch this user-base of advisors, wealth managers, asset managers, and hedge fund managers from among Advent’s 4,300 clients have discussed more than 700 topics, which have been referenced more than 7,500 times.
According to Welling, “One of the most powerful opportunities of being an
Advent client is that you get the opportunity to be part of an ecosystem that
includes some of the biggest and most respected firms in the industry. As six of
the top ten advisors in the country use Advent solutions, our clients have the
opportunity to network, interact, and share best practices with some of the key
leaders in the advisory industry.”
“Black Diamond’s innovative technology isn’t the only reason we’re a client; the people behind the technology and the back-office business processes they complete for us on a daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly basis are key differentiators. The Black Diamond team seems more like an extension of our office than an external provider,” said Mark Parker, Principal, Managing Director at Murphy, Middleton, Hinkle & Parker, Inc.
Over the last 30 years of industry change, our core mission to help our clients focus on their unique strategies and deliver exceptional investor service has never wavered. With unparalleled precision and ahead-of-the-curve solutions, we've helped over 4,300 firms in nearly 50 countries — from established global institutions to small start-up practices – to grow their business and thrive. Advent technology helps firms minimize risk, work together seamlessly, and discover new opportunities in a constantly evolving world. Together with our clients, we are shaping the future of investment management. For more information on Advent products visit http://www.advent.com.
About Black Diamond
An independent business group of Advent Software, Black Diamond provides investment advisors and wealth managers with a cloud-based portfolio management platform offering aggregation, customizable reporting and rebalancing combined with fully outsourced daily reconciliation and data management service. With innovative technology backed by exceptional service, Black Diamond frees advisors to focus on serving clients and growing their business. More than 565 advisory firms have chosen Black Diamond to help manage more than $266 billion in assets. Learn more at http://www.advent.com/blackdiamond.
Advent, Advent Software, the Advent and logo composite, and Advent Direct are registered marks of, and Black Diamond is a mark of, Advent Software, Inc. All other company names or marks mentioned herein are those of their respective owners.
Any forward-looking statements included in this press release, such as statements regarding anticipated products, services, enhancements or availability and features thereof, growth and financial projections, and strategies or plans of management for future operations involve assumptions, risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from our expectations. These risks, uncertainties and assumptions include the successful development, timing, anticipated features, functionality, benefits and market acceptance of new products, services and enhancements, the impact of initiatives by competitors, continued sales of existing products and services, continued uncertainties and fluctuations in the financial markets and economic conditions and other risks detailed in Advent’s most recent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, its quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and its annual report on Form 10-K, copies of which may be obtained by visiting Advent’s Investor Relations Web site at www.advent.com. Any unreleased services or features referenced in this or other press releases or public statements are not currently available and may not be delivered on time or at all. Customers who purchase Advent’s products or services should make their purchase decisions based upon features that are currently available. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements including any financial, product or other guidance, whether as a result of events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.
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