The typical consumer faces a dizzying array of choices when planning for retirement: Do they do it through 401(k)s and IRAs? Stocks, bonds or ETFs? To Roth or not to Roth?
Banking consultant Jon Stein knew there had to be a better way. In 2008, he launched Betterment, an online “robo-adviser” that uses algorithms to help customers construct and manage their portfolios at a fraction of the cost of a human financial expert.
Though he was told it would never work, the concept caught on. Betterment is now the largest startup in wealth management, managing $5.8 billion for more than 175,000 customers. A growing number of traditional firms have also gotten into robo-advice—Fidelity, Charles Schwab, and Vanguard among them.
Stein, who appears on this year’s Fortune’s 40 Under 40 list, sees Betterment becoming a sort of self-driving car, where investors can input their financial goals and let the service determine the best way to get there.
Check out the video above to hear Stein’s views on fintech and whether or not he’d ever be open to an acquisition.