As a following to its coverage of Schwab IMPACT 2019, MutualFunds.com interviewed David Lyon, CEO of Oranj, about the firm's platform and its mission to help advisors.
In a Q&A format, David talks about the origins of the firm and shares insights on :
- The challenges that Oranj's wealth management platform solves
- The passions David and everyone at Oranj share for independent advisors
- Differentiation through service, real human, white-glove service with the Oranj Client Success Team
- How fintech solutions should truly enable advisors
David Lyon (DL): I formed the company in 2014. Oranj is changing a dated business model to help advisors spend less time managing and more time advising. Launched out of a need to more effectively communicate with clients, Oranj developed one of the first, free end-to-end technology platforms for advisors to help them succeed in the ever-shifting landscape.
Our mission then and today is centered on helping advisors to find and maintain independence.
MutualFunds.com: What problem is your product trying to solve?
DL: Every idea starts with a problem. For Oranj it was simple: working with an advisor looks a lot like it did 20 years ago, despite the fact that technology has already changed the way other industries were able to run better businesses and deliver a world-class experience to their customers. The reality was that the days of engaging clients on a quarterly/annual basis have passed. Clients’ lives are busy, unfolding on a daily basis, and advisors need to be able to support them accordingly. To do this effectively means finding ways to free up time – by finding ways to better manage the front- to back-office aspects of the business – and focus on improving the client experience.
MutualFunds.com: Why is this problem worth solving?
DL: We believe deeply in the value that advisors provide and are particularly passionate about independent advisors, as Oranj’s roots were born out of a Registered Investment Advisory firm. We love independent advisors because they provide a higher level of service, deeper personal relationships, and customized solutions that cannot be found at the larger ‘big box’ institutions. As such, we also believe that running an advisory practice should be immersive, meaningful, and rewarding. Technology should provide advisors with the ability to have deep personal relationships with their clients, provide a higher level of service, and offer customized financial solutions.
MutualFunds.com: What is differentiated about your solution?
DL: By circumventing traditional channels, and designing technology in-house, Oranj reinvented the software-as-a-service business model in the financial services industry in four main ways. We are able to provide innovative capabilities that enable a better client experience at a fraction of the cost. With the Oranj platform, advisors are able to decrease business expenses, streamline investment management, deliver dynamic client service, and simplify their tech stack.
First of all, Oranj’s free platform helps advisors keep their costs down by reducing software costs and sourcing low-cost third-party managed investment solutions.
Second, Oranj helps advisors streamline their investment management. A core part of the platform includes portfolio management, trading and rebalancing that is designed to be user-friendly without sacrificing sophistication.
Third, Oranj helps advisors improve the client experience. We provide the conduit and a digital meeting place so advisors don’t need to spend 90 minutes meeting with clients every quarter just to catch up. They can do that on a daily basis because they’re able to see their clients’ lives change, whether that’s tracking to certain goals that they have or a client’s overall net worth and balance sheet.
Lastly is the ability to really simplify the software that they’re using. Oranj simplifies what can be a tech stack of five to 11 pieces of software, cutting down on the number of platforms that an advisor has to log into. Advisors can utilize modern user experiences and user interfaces to make complex tasks very simple with a really elegant design and workflows.
The real differentiator though extends beyond our software to include a white-glove level of service. With the Oranj Client Success team, advisors receive dedicated, real human support throughout onboarding and their entire Oranj experience.
MutualFunds.com: What is the best way for prospective clients to learn more about you?
DL: We all lead busy lives and the thought of replacing or implementing a new software solution can seem overwhelming. That is why Oranj applies an ‘adopt at your own pace’ model so advisors can onboard the aspects of the platform in the order and timeframe that make most sense for their business.
The best way to understand and experience this is to reach out for a platform demo or try it out by setting up your free account.