Fintech Impact


Wealthsimple with Dave Nugent (CIO)| EP01

Ep. 1


Welcome to the very first episode of the Fintech Impact podcast, with Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host of this show that offers expert insight into the Fintech world of financial technology. Today, Jason interviews David Nugent, the CIO and Co-Founder of Wealthsimple, Canada’s largest robo advisor and digital investment solutions for clients.


Show Notes:

●     01:10 – Wealthsimple is a robo advisor that started in the Fall of 2014, and now

                    services about 60,000 clients with offices in Canada, United States, and the


●     01:34 – Power Financial is the main backer of Wealthsimple thanks to about $165

                    million in capital with a millennial investor client base and B2B offerings.

●     03:13 – David Nugent’s personal journey includes: starting out in the business at 22

                    “asking businesses owners for their life savings” as an advisor and shifted

                    from advice to technology.

●     04:42 – Wealthsimple focuses on the customer experience. Most of the team

                    comes from technology and design, less from the financial world –

                    addressing problems from a usability standpoint. 

●     05:11 – Millennials are great clients because they are at the start of their careers, 

                    have a lot of future earning power and life transitions ahead, and possible


●     05:59 – On the advisor side of the business, it’s how do you help advisors service

                    more of those clients that are intimidated, while still allowing them do the


●     09:04 – The reaction to the advisor company towards Wealthsimple in the financial

                    planner sector has really been onboard.

●     10:13 – Wealthsimple is unique in that they are a robo advisor that operates in

                    multiple counties. The UK has proven to be at the forefront of regulatory


●     11:14 – The scope of size of the U.S. is that the financial industry in Canada is

                     smaller than that of just the state of California.

●     12:22 – There is a challenge in the cost of acquisition.

●     14:56 – Wealthsimple has maintained a great relationship with Power Financial,

                    who have made about a dozen acquisitions in wealth, insurance, bank, and

                    credit card areas.

●     16:40 – The average age of a Wealthsimple customer is 31.

●     17:57 – As far as accounts in the United States, about 50 cents on the dollar has

                    been allocated to socially responsible investing. 

●     20:02 – One dollar accounts are possible to democratize investing and remove all

                    excuses people have for not getting started.

●     22:25 – Data collection and behavioral nudging has begun with a card system

                    within the application.

●     24:54 – Nontraditional marketing for Wealthsimple has stemmed from hiring a

                    brand leadership team, and none of them come from the financial services


●     27:24 – “Investing for Humans” is a tagline that underlines Weathsimple’s push to

                    talk with clients and not down to them just to “sound smart.” They won

                    back-to-back Webby Awards (like the Oscars of the Internet) for Best

                    Financial Services Website globally – with two different websites.

●     29:13 – They would like to start to offer more products.

●     31:25 – The Wealthsimple value proposition to the end client is democratizing

                    investing. On the advisor side, it is that plus automating and

                    systematizing the operational workflow that they do daily.


3 Key Points:

1.  Millennials are key clients that offer a whole lifetime of earning power still ahead of them, major life stages ahead like buying a house, and possible inheritances down the line.

2.  Empower the good advisor to do more business, and expose the bad advisor, and they are going to be in trouble.

3.  One dollar accounts are possible to democratize investing and remove all

     excuses people have for not getting started.


Tweetable Quotes:

-    “When the Canadian model got up and running, the biggest difference between the two models is that we had to call every single client with a phone call. Where in the U.S. none of that actually happens.“ – David Nugent.    

-    “Good advisors who want to do holistic planning don’t want to spend their time doing paperwork. They want the transparency, they want the efficiencies. And we are basically giving it to them.” – David Nugent.    

-   “Millennials, in our minds, are fantastic clients because they’re just at the beginnings our their careers. They’ve got a whole lifetime of earnings ahead of them .” – David Nugent.   


Resources Mentioned:

● LinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s LinkedIn

● Facebook – Jason Pereira’s Facebook

● Woodgate Financial – Website for Woodgate Financial

● Lending Loop – Jason Pereira’s Facebook

● Wealthsimple – Weathsimple Website   

● David Nugent’s LinkedIn –LinkedIn for David Nugent

More Episodes


Open Banking 3: Canada with Ben Harrison, Andrew Moor, & Daniel Eberhard | E161

Ep. 161
In this 161st episode of Fintech Impact, Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host is joined by Ben Harrison (Portag3 Ventures), Andrew Moor (EQ Bank), & Daniel Eberhard (KOHO) for part 3 of his series on Open Banking. This one is all about Canada!Episode Highlights:0:57 – Andrew Moor introduces himself and EQ Bank.2:25 – Ben Harrison gives insight into his role at Portag3.3:58 – Daniel Eberhard introduces himself and CoHo’s mission.6:15 – What is the current state of Open Banking in Canada?9:00 – How does this round of conversations surrounding Open Banking differ from conversations in the past?12:49 – Jason discusses the unprecedented urgency around regulatory reforms in Canada right now.14:19 – What kind of consideration is Canada’s advisory committee taking from markets that have already implemented Open Banking?18:12 – Everyone discusses the lack of data rights for consumers in Canada.23:28 – What does Open Banking mean to the future of KOHO, EQ Bank, and Portag3?30:39 – Who will be making the decisions for consumers’ financial lives with Open Banking?32:39 – Is there a concern about focusing on solely quantitative data and ignoring qualitative data surrounding consumer lives?38:30 – Jason explains how quality goes down every time a company adds a new product.40:48 – What is the one thing that everyone needs to know about why we need Open Banking?3 Key PointsCurrently, Canada’s 5 largest banks have the largest revenue to population ratio in the world, largely due to a sheer lack of competition.Unlike past conversations around Open Banking with the Canadian Minister of Finance, this time around there is an actual proposal.The fundamental push for Open Banking has been fueled by a lack of engagement by consumers. The hope is that Open Banking makes financial transactions and banking transparent and simple.Tweetable Quotes:“This is a way to unplug the power of some very large institutions and deliver more value to the entrepreneurial community...everyone should be aligned on this kind of thing.” – Andrew Moor“The message that I take from the advisory committee’s work is they strongly believe that government absolutely needs to play an important role in designing the framework from a legislative standpoint.” – Ben Harrison“The real gating factor is actually the approval and I think that’s always been the biggest risk to this process. And now we have a framework through which to shape the discussion.” – Daniel Eberhard“The general how we’re going to do this hasn’t necessarily been fully addressed yet. It’s more so we need to do this.” – Jason Pereira“It is really hard to be good at tons of things.” – Jason PereiraResources Mentioned:Facebook – Jason Pereira’s FacebookLinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s – Website for Fintech – Sign up for Jason Pereira’s – Website for Woodgate FinancialPortag3 Ventures – Website for Portag3 VenturesEQ Bank – Website for EQ BankKOHO – Website for KOHO Financial

Open Banking 2: U.S. with Frederik Mennes, John Pitts, & Yoseph West | E160

Ep. 160
In this 160th episode of Fintech Impact, Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host interviews Frederik Mennes (OneSpan), John Pitts (Plaid), & Yoseph West (Relay) to discuss the state of Open Banking in the United States!Episode Highlights:● 0:50 – John Pitts introduces himself and Plaid.● 1:32 – Yoseph West introduces himself and Relay.● 2:08 – Frederik Mennes introduces himself and OneSpan.● 3:22 – What is the state of affairs in the US for Open Banking right now?● 5:52 – Frederik addresses the fundamental differences between the US and Europe in their approaches to Open Banking.● 7:00 – How has the state of regulations in the US impacted Relay’s growth?● 8:30 – What are the incentives and motivations for Plaid’s clients on the bank side?● 11:34 – Frederick shares about OneSpan’s client education around security in Open Banking.● 13:30 – John explains why he thinks that regulations are not as vital as some might think.● 16:47 – What is going right and what needs to be fixed in the US situation?● 24:49 – How do US companies regulate the risk of moving to APIs?● 27:46 – Is it reasonable to draw a compliance line for customers with a certain value of assets?● 29:48 – Jason and Frederick weigh the risk vs. reward of Open Banking for smaller banks.● 31:39 – How much pushback does John see from Plaid’s screen scraping guidelines?● 36:08 – Where does Yoseph feel constrained in the current system?● 41:00 – Everyone shares the one key thing that they believe the US Open Banking system should focus on moving forward.3 Key Points1. While the US finds itself years ahead of Europe on the practice of Open Banking, it finds itself an equal amount behind Europe on regulations.2. Open Banking companies in the US face the challenge of switching over to Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) without risking data and client rights.3. Screen scraping, or consumer data extraction for automation of previously-manual actions, is still allowed under PSD2. It has actually been updated in its security measures.Tweetable Quotes:● “It’s no secret that Europe has been pretty much at the forefront of the Open Banking initiatives around the world through initiatives such as PSD1 and PSD2.” – Jason Pereira● “To actually deliver true open banking, the dream that we all think of...I think that’s a dream that will only exist as a result of Challenger or Neobanks.” – Yoseph West● “At this point, regulation is actually very helpful to create a level playing field for security. Regulation can help to make sure that all the players in the ecosystem...implement the right security technology.” – Frederik Mennes● “The key thing that makes the US market special is that it is being driven by consumer demand.” – John PittsResources Mentioned:● Facebook – Jason Pereira’s Facebook● LinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s LinkedIn● – Sign up for Jason Pereira’s newsletter● – Website for Woodgate Financial● Plaid – Website for Plaid● OneSpan – Website for OneSpan● Relay – Website for Relay

Open Banking 1: Europe with Hesus Inoma & Daniel Döderlein | E159

Ep. 159
In this 159th episode of Fintech Impact, Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host interviews Hesus Inoma and Daniel Döderlein. As 2 pioneers of Open Banking in Europe, Daniel and Hesus are here to discuss the current movements and innovations of world leaders in European Banking!Episode Highlights:0:18 – Jason explains why he is hosting a 5–part series on Open Banking.1:41 – Daniel Döderlein introduces himself and what he does.2:29 – Hesus Inoma introduces himself and his professional experience.3:32 – Daniel defines Open Banking for the layperson.9:16 – What is PSD2 and what was its impact?12:20 – Jason and Hesus break down how banks will win or lose with Open Banking.15:36 – Daniel explains how banks have been rotten and spoiled for so long.19:39 – What will happen to big banks in the future with Open Banking?26:46 – Jason, Hesus, and Daniel discuss the shift in innovation that is happening in banking right now.32:52 – What does the customer really want and where does the business lie?37:00 – Jason breaks down the varying bank concentrations in different parts of the world.39:45 – Hesus and Daniel share their thoughts on the Visa–Plaid deal and the recent antitrust lawsuit surrounding it.47:22 – What is not working and what needs to change?53:28 – Daniel lays out a concerning future dilemma and question.55:00 – Hesus shares his final thoughts on the future of Open Banking.3 Key PointsAccepting card payments comes at a cost, either handled by the business or a service provider, presenting a problem for businesses that operate outside of Open Banking.PSD2, a regulation for electronic payment services in Europe, is putting the banking system in its place while also assisting banks in adapting to new Open Banking technologies.Over 50% of countries have 3 banks controlling more than 66% of the entire country’s banking deposits.Tweetable Quotes:“For us, Open Banking is a journey that will lead from Open Banking to Open Finance to open the economy.” – Hesus Inoma“When you really think about it, banking is a highly–commoditized business.” – Jason Pereira“The smaller players have always been reliant on the large players in terms of infrastructure, access, and service rendering.” – Daniel Döderlein“Everyone hates at least one of the banks that we deal with in this country, loves to buy the stocks to get the dividends, but also thinks we need them because they’re safe.” – Jason PereiraResources Mentioned:Facebook – Jason Pereira’s FacebookLinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s – Website for Fintech – Sign up for Jason Pereira’s – Website for Woodgate – Website for BBVAVisa–Plaid Deal – Article Discussing the Visa–Plaid – Daniel Döderlein’s WebsiteLinkedIn – Hesus Inoma’s LinkedIn