First-ever Innovation Quest winner announced at LINC 2019

First-ever Innovation Quest winner announced at LINC 2019

Mary Kate Gulick | February 14, 2019

After months of preparation, it came down to this: a 15-minute pitch to an audience of some 2,000 independent registered investment advisors (RIAs) and an expert panel of judges at the TD Ameritrade Institutional 2019 National LINC conference. In the end, Derrick Wesley of iMar Learning Solutions and his idea, Plan-It, prevailed as the inaugural grand prize winner of Innovation Quest, a fintech competition to generate ideas to move the RIA industry forward.  

What’s Innovation Quest?

Innovation Quest is TD Ameritrade Institutional’s first-ever nationwide competition, designed to attract leading-edge technology solutions for RIAs. With a total of $100,000 in prize money up for grabs, TD Ameritrade Institutional kicked off the competition in July 2018, by inviting entries from anyone with a big idea for enhancing the lives of RIAs or their clients. Out of 135 eligible submissions, three finalists were announced November 2018.

All three finalists received $25,000 and secured a trip to National LINC to compete in the competition’s final round for the grand prize, an additional $25,000. As part of a general keynote session on Thursday, Feb. 7, each finalist took the stage to make a 15-minute, proof-of-concept presentation to a panel of judges and a ballroom full of advisors. Attendees participated in voting for the winning idea.

“The Innovation Quest competition proved to us that innovative ideas can come from anywhere,” said Dario. “By tapping into the marketplace, we can source good ideas that can help RIAs thrive in the decades to come.”

The winning idea

Plan-It, a financial literacy app that RIAs can use with their clients was developed by Derrick Wesley, owner of iMar Learning Solutions. Plan-It teaches the importance of financial planning to anyone as young as 5 years old up through retirement. The app links client accounts together with financial literacy education, providing its users with financial education based on their spending habits and patterns.

“It’s a thrill to win, but it’s even more exciting to be able to move forward with developing Plan-It,” said, Derrick Wesley of iMar Learning Solutions. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to be here and show the potential of how Plan-It can help advisors grow their businesses by serving their clients better through technology.”

The runners up

Patrick Beaudan, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Emotomy, presented the Risk Assessment Tool, an application that uses machine-learning algorithms to give early warnings to RIAs when client accounts are at risk of leaving or need cultivation. In addition, the app warns clients when there has been a significant divergence between their investment returns and what their risk profile suggests.

Timothy Hooker and Brian Smith, co-founders and partners of Dynamic Wealth Solutions, presented the RIA Genie, a voice-activated assistant. RIA Genie uses natural language processing, artificial intelligence technology to develop a cost-effective voice-activated workflow assistant that reduces or eliminates the need for low-end administrative workers and empowers advisors to be more productive.


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