January 11, 2017 / 2:30 PM / 9 months ago

Morgan Stanley partners with Addepar to see more of clients' wealth

The logo of Morgan Stanley is seen at an office building in Zurich, Switzerland September 22, 2016. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/Files

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Morgan Stanley is rolling out a new software platform to 20 of its top financial advisory teams to help them see more of their wealthiest clients assets.

The bank, which manages most of its technology in-house, said late Tuesday that part of its private wealth management division will use Addepar, a Mountain View, California-based technology firm that already partners with family offices and independent investment advisers.

Ultra-wealthy clients typically hold their assets in limited partnerships, family trusts or in alternative and illiquid investments spread across a number of banks and accounts.

Addepar’s platform will allow Morgan Stanley, with clients’ permission, to gather information from those various accounts in one place, and to quickly parse the data to answer individualized questions, said Addepar’s chief executive Eric Poirier.

“The tailored reporting is what Morgan Stanley really liked,” said Poirier, who used the example of different client preferences. “The patriarch might want performance data by country and asset class. But the son wants to know the fee agreements they have with each fund manager and how that correlates with the fund manager’s performance.”

Gathering that information, putting it into spreadsheets and calculating answers used to take so long that advisers had to limit client meetings to once a quarter, Poirier said.

Morgan Stanley’s Chief Information Officer Chris Randazzo said advisors will use Addepar “to deliver a differentiated service to high net worth clients.”

Poirier declined to disclose how much in client assets the 20 Morgan Stanley wealth management teams will move to the platform, but the California company ended 2016 with $560 billion on its platform.

Reporting By Elizabeth Dilts; editing by Grant McCool

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