National Bank takes minority stake in robo-advisor Nest Wealth

National Bank has made a $6 million investment in Toronto-based robo-advisor Nest Wealth, a major step for one of Canada’s big banks moving into the rapidly growing online investment industry. In a separate agreement announced Friday, Nest Wealth has also licensed its investment technology to National Bank to set up a digital platform to help the bank’s advisors manage clients’ money.“It’s the first time that any of the big six banks has made a strategic investment in a Canadian fintech (financial technology) company,” said Nest Wealth founder and CEO Randy Cass.(BMO has its own in-house robo advisory service called SmartFolio.)“It’s another huge step forward for our company and our clients,” said Cass.Article Continued BelowRobo-advisors provide automated, algorithm-based portfolio management advice without much, if any, human interaction, with fees that are lower than those charged by typical brokers.Nest Wealth launched in Canada in 2013, and is one of the largest among more than a dozen robo-advisors that have sprung up in recent years as the trend toward online wealth management gathers steam. The company does not release its assets under management, but Cass said they have grown “like a weed” by 300 per cent in the last 12 months.