Here in the U.S. financial sector, we’ve seen a boom in consumer financial technology companies that modernize the way people save, spend, and invest. Yet in neighboring Canada, the consumer financial sector continues to largely be dominated by a handful of legacy financial institutions. These institutions haven’t changed much in decades — they have high costs, opaque fee structures, and have been slow to leverage technology to modernize the way they engage customers.
In a world where technology is improving so many of our everyday experiences, consumers want modern financial products designed around their needs. They care about low, transparent fees, great user experiences, and the convenience of using multiple financial products from a primary institution. This desire has created a massive opportunity to transform the Canadian financial services industry.
That’s why I am excited to share Greylock’s investment in Wealthsimple, the company behind Canada’s leading digital investing and stock trading platforms. Founded in 2014, Wealthsimple started with an automated investing service for consumers, and has now expanded its product offerings to include commission-free stock and crypto trading, a savings account, and tax filing software. Everything about Wealthsimple is designed with the customer front and center: clear, straightforward pricing; an elegant website, and sleek mobile apps. Wealthsimple’s products are now used by more than 1.5M Canadians, and they’ve become a well-known, trusted consumer brand in Canada.
My career as a product leader at technology companies like Google, LinkedIn and Groupon has created deep empathy for the end user experience. As an investor, I look for entrepreneurs building compelling products that delight users. I was immediately drawn to Wealthsimple’s clean, simple and intuitive user experience. Their focus on building great products has resulted in rapid client growth and highly satisfied customers.
Wealthsimple was founded by Michael Katchen (CEO), Brett Huneycutt (COO) and Rudy Adler (Chief Product Officer), a group of mission-driven, principled entrepreneurs. I know the co-founders well from backing their previous company 1000Memories in 2010 during my first stint at Greylock. The company was acquired by Ancestry.com in 2012, where the team spent several years before leaving to found Wealthsimple. Over the past six years these founders have built an incredible team, attracting talent from top technology companies who are passionate about Wealthsimple’s mission to help Canadians achieve financial freedom
At Greylock, our mission is to help realize rare potential. I’m honored to partner with Wealthsimple on their journey to build the leading consumer financial services platform in Canada.