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1 JUNE 2023



Executive Summary

While formally onboarding VRGL, the Ritholtz Wealth Management ("RWM") team was approached by a prospective client with 100+ pages of statements and an approximately $17 million-dollar portfolio. Given the number of pages, size, and complexity of the prospect's portfolio, RWM saw this as an opportunity to test VRGL's Client Acquisition and Proposal Management solution. After leveraging VRGL successfully to accelerate and support the entire prospective client investment mandate, VRGL has become a core component of RWM's client acquisition process, providing the team with the knowledge they need to demonstrate why a wealth transition to RWM makes sense. Since implementing VRGL, RWM has accelerated the speed and effectiveness of prospect meetings and presentations, leading to a 50% reduction in time to onboard a new client.

A Client Win

As wealth management "influencers," with senior team members hosting podcasts and making regular appearances on CNBC, RWM experiences numerous prospective client inbounds a month and needed a way to identify opportunities and areas where they felt they could add value. On the day VRGL was onboarded, a $17 million-dollar prospect approached RWM looking for a fresh perspective of their investments. Concerned that it would take the team days to manually extract and analyze all 105 pages of statement data, the team relied on VRGL to deliver a quick analysis and breakdown of the portfolio.

In less than 45 minutes, VRGL automatically extracted all positions, transactions, tax lots, estimated realized gain/loss, and approximate fees associated with the 105 pages of statements and validated the relevant information against VRGL's security master. In the same timeframe, VRGL ran its 5 Pillar Analytics - performance, risk, diversification, taxes, and fees. Based on the extracted data and analytics VRGL provided, RWM was able to uncover that a bulge bracket advisor had been buying and selling structured notes to the tune of 30% of their portfolio and maintained a heavy concentration in technology. This allocation caused higher than normal fees and commissions, impacting the prospect's investment returns. Moreover, the prospect was unaware the structured notes represented as significant of an allocation as they did, exposing the breakdown in communication between the client and their former advisor.

Over the next few days, the prospect began the process of transitioning the entire portfolio to RWM.

Sean Russo, Research Associate at RWM and power user of VRGL on behalf of 20+ advisors, continues to leverage VRGL to process and analyze complex portfolios. Stating that, "VRGL just makes things more concrete," Sean attributes an increase in RWM's prospect-to-client conversion rate to the accurate and holistic assessment VRGL provides with a 50% reduction in decision time frames by those clients.

"Being able to point out where things could be better, makes having the conversation with prospects easier and advisors feel more like a fiduciary than a salesperson." - Sean Russo

Creating Confident Conversations

For RWM, VRGL didn't replace any tool(s) in their tech stack, rather it has enabled them to improve the identification of opportunities, resulting in more complete conversations in their prospecting process. Before VRGL, Sean and RWM's team of advisors relied heavily on Excel to assess a prospect's portfolio, consuming significant time, resources, and creating chance for human error.

"Because of VRGL, advisors are having better conversations when discussing a prospect's current allocation, allowing them to easily identify where to facilitate conversations and convey differentiation," says Sean Russo. Additionally, VRGL has enhanced the effectiveness of other tools leveraged in the RWM technology stack because the information feeding into those solutions is now automated rather than manually entered. RWM views VRGL not only as a platform that streamlines operations, but one that significantly enhances processes and accelerates account analyses.

Visuals that Educate & Differentiate

VRGL's primary value for Sean and his teammates is that it helps consolidate and reflect the client's entire investment world more efficiently and expeditiously. Presenting a left side/right side comparison of the current portfolio allocation vs. the proposed allocation makes it simple for advisors to gain an education, recognize opportunities, provide actionable advice, and convey clear differentiation.

And for clients, the Illustrations VRGL produces eliminates the need for complex explanations creating an easy-to-understand plan that demonstrates a better outcome. It is a first for many prospective clients to be able to see a clear picture of their current portfolio alongside an advisor's differentiation, especially across VRGL's 5 Pillars.

"Clients really haven't been shown their portfolio in this way. They see statements or excel files, but the actual visuals VRGL provides such as the allocation donuts and tables… it just makes it easier for clients to understand." - Sean Russo

Return on Investment

Within one month of onboarding VRGL, Ritholtz Wealth Management was able to attribute a substantial return on the investment in the platform due to the time savings in conducting client legacy holding analyses. Closing in on ten months of leveraging the platform, RWM has seen increased use of VRGL resulting in more streamlined processes, and time savings from what had historically been a manual, bespoke process. Since implementing VRGL in their prospecting process, RWM has experienced an acceleration in the decision-making process for more and more clients. Simply put, the firm has been able to deliver high quality results to more prospects in a shorter period of time.

If you are interested in learning more about how VRGL can help accelerate revenue for your firm while reducing time and resources, please reach out to sales@vrglwealth.com or connect with us by visiting www.vrglwealth.com/contact.

*Ritholtz Wealth Management is a Registered Investment Adviser. Advisory services are only offered to clients or prospective clients where Ritholtz Wealth Management and its representatives are properly licensed or exempt from licensure. Past performance is no guarantee of future returns. Investing involves risk and possible loss of principal capital. No advice may be rendered by Ritholtz Wealth Management unless a client service agreement is in place.

Sean Russo

Research Associate, RWM 

Sean Russo has been a Research Associate at Ritholtz Wealth Management since January 2022, supporting RWM with data research, business development, portfolio construction, and portfolio management strategy.

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Ritholtz Wealth Management ("RWM") is a $2.9 Billion-dollar registered investment advisory (RIA) firm focused on providing financial planning and wealth management services to clients. RWM leverages technology and planning expertise to enable investors to achieve specific life and retirement goals. In addition to the services they provide, RWM has a large social media podcast, blog, and CNBC contributor personalities reaching millions monthly.