4U Platform Launches Industry First and Only Real-Time Digital Partnership Platform Securing Adoption By Morgan Stanley, Morningstar, T. Rowe Price

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4U and Adopters Further the Financial Industry by Catalyzing a Digital Transformation – Helping the Industry Move from Analogue Off-line Collaboration Towards Connected Online Engagement

4U’s singular platform meets the everyday needs of firms of all sizes and resolves collective industry challenges by transforming multiple partner workstreams and delivering an innovative online, multimedia, management and measurement platform.

4U Platform, the financial industry's first digital marketplace where the currency is engagement, announced the launch of its innovative online, multimedia, management and measurement platform created specifically to enhance the partnership between Investment Companies and Wealth Management Firms. Industry-wide acceptance has been rapid as Morgan Stanley, Morningstar and T. Rowe Price adopt 4U’s platform. 4U has leveraged the insight and input from financial partners to create a transformative, seamless engagement driving operational efficiency, new business opportunities and better day-to-day business.

4U was created in 2015 by several financial industry veterans who understand collaboration challenges from the inside out. Denise Wypiszenski is a founder and co-CEO. She is a former Smith Barney Wall Streeter-turned-fintech-entrepreneur. Arin Epstein is a founder and co-CEO. An engineer by training with a 20+ year career as a technology strategist, his experience spans high growth fintech startups and the largest institutions on Wall Street.

4U collaborated with 50-60 companies on the investment company side, 100% of the top wealth management firms and some of the industry’s largest platform providers to receive their feedback and insight. Over the course of four years and working closely with the financial industry, 4U recognized that to really help any one financial services firm, they had to help all of them. That’s why they developed the platform specifically for all of their business challenges, goals and aspirations. That collaborative approach to problem-solving resulted in an industry solution. 4U’s singular platform meets the everyday needs of firms of all sizes and resolves collective industry challenges by transforming multiple partner workstreams and delivering an innovative online, multimedia, management and measurement platform. 4U’s reach and connectivity with companies of all sizes across the industry -- including the collaboration with Morgan Stanley, Morningstar and T. Rowe Price -- ensured that they built a solution for the collective challenge.

“The current industry model has no comprehensive nor fully accurate means of calculating the ROI of investment dollars. Listening to our partner feedback, we felt it was necessary to build a new way to address this problem and create a bridge between Investment Companies and Wealth Management Firms,” said Denise Wypiszenski, founder and co-CEO. “Collectively, we all want to modernize, scale and streamline the current partnership model between them. Now we have a new engagement platform that enhances efficiencies, communication and uncovers opportunity through valuable data. We couldn’t have done this without the collaboration of our partners, who continue to drive innovative practices in the financial industry. Our goal is to have 4U Platform adopted by every financial services firm.”

“Marketing review teams are inundated with an inordinate amount of content on any given day from third party firms that require an extensive internal review and approval process,” said Margaret Flynn-Martin, Managing Director, Head of Relationship Management Group, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management. “We believe the 4U Connect digital technology solution will help drive productivity, effectiveness and efficiencies as well as speed up and streamline our third party marketing review and approval process.”

“Morningstar’s mission is to empower investor success, and our software products connect people to the investing information and tools they need. Within Morningstar Office Cloud, our practice management software offering for advisors, the 4U integration will expand the breadth of information available to advisory firms, streamlining the way in which asset managers engage with the advisor community,” said Dermot O’Mahony, head of software products, Morningstar.

“T. Rowe Price is pleased to be part of the industry’s first, real-time content management and measurement platform. It will allow us to deliver our award-winning thought leadership to advisors and their clients in a more streamlined, timely, and scalable manner,” said Annie Whitescarver Brown, head of T. Rowe Price U.S. Intermediaries Broker/Dealer Distribution.

4U takes engagement further by enabling direct communication and information to be shared between Investment Companies and Wealth Management firms, delivering secure and compliant access to approved content and analytics; as well as overcoming legacy issues around lengthy approval time and manual processes. No other platform provides robust analytics and insight to improve ROI. There is no limitation on the types of content that can be shared including value-add content, seminars, research, fact sheets, client education, webinars, podcasts, videos, product information. 4U gives every company the ability to tightly manage data and document permissions throughout the lifecycle of every resource.

4U set out to find an industry-wide technology solution to the financial industry’s age-old challenge of helping advisors effectively utilize an ever expanding range of products and services on behalf of their investors. Today, the providers of these products and services spend billions on sales and marketing for this purpose and the result is just too much noise and too little engagement.

“Under the current industry partnership model for content and resources, investment companies are only effectively reaching the top 20% of all advisors. We have developed a way to create scaled distribution where content gets ongoing exposure to all advisors 24 hours a day, 365 days a year,” said Arin Epstein, founder and co-CEO. “There are many unique benefits of 4U including new automated processes, enhanced risk mitigation, improved workflow efficiency, increased advisor productivity and a more robust user experience for all users. 4U’s scalability wouldn’t have been possible without every professional across the IC/WMF partnership continuum providing an active voice in creating a platform that works for them. This important partner feedback will enable platform enhancements and additional product development.”

4U has unique platform components for advisors, Investment Companies, Wealth Management Firms and Platform Providers. Specifically:

  • 4U Connect is the collaborative portal that provides the “common app” for investment companies and wealth management firms to upload and share content for marketing review and approval through a single platform interface.
  • 4U Engage is the secure and customizable dashboard advisors use to access approved content available at their firm. When wealth management firms opt-in to the dashboard, analytics are available to further optimize the platform for investment companies and wealth management firms and to provide valuable ROI information.

4U enables controls and workflow planning that deliver joint permissioning for all parties (either through 4U Connect or 4U Engage). 4U users include marketing and compliance teams, relationship managers, advisors, product teams, wholesalers and others. RIA/IBD platform providers also use it to enhance the content engagement and user experience of their current offering. 4U’s analytics demonstrate content usage (by geography for Investment Companies/by advisor for Wealth Management Firms), search, bookmarking, sharing – all of which enable Investment Companies and Wealth Management Firms to fine-tune their partnerships and grow their businesses in a more impactful way.

For more information visit https://www.4uplatform.com/.

About 4U Platform
Founded in 2015, 4U Platform is the financial industry's first and only real-time, cross-industry digital marketplace where the currency is engagement. Enabling direct communication and information to be shared between Investment Companies and Wealth Management firms, 4U delivers secure and compliant access to approved content and analytics.

4U’s industry-wide solution, transforms multiple, partner workstreams and delivers an innovative online, multimedia, management and measurement platform – where financial industry partners connect. 4U is built from the ground up, for firms of all sizes and as a many-to-many partner platform where everyone can effectively work one-to-one. Companies manage their end of the partnership on 4U in their own way, while still benefiting from the connectivity across all partners and delivery of valuable data to them.

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Fran Del Valle
Rally Point Media Strategies
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