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Need A Robo-Advisor? Bambu Can Build You One

Need A Robo-Advisor? Bambu Can Build You One

In 2016, Ned Phillips, along with Aki Ranin and Luke Janssen, founded Bambu to address robo-advising in a new way.

The fintech CEO elaborated on how Bambu is aiming to democratize financial planning. 

'The Building Blocks' 

“We don’t have a robo-advisor; we have the building blocks for robo-advisors,” Phillips told Benzinga. 

Bambu specializes in delivering customized robo-advisor platforms via use of proprietary algorithms and data sets. The company combines independent modules to develop client-advisor dashboards that enable portfolio-building, tracking and balancing according to personalized risk profiles, behaviors and goals.

Bambu has done business in America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia; its notable relationships include HSBC Holdings plc (NYSE: HSBC), Standard Chartered PLC (OTC: SCBFF) and Refinitiv.

The firm building a robo-advisor for "Shark Tank" star Kevin O’Leary, Phillips said. 

3 Main Products 

Bambu is geared toward achieving clients' needs, the CEO said: "whether millennial, whether private bank; we are agnostic to asset class; we are agnostic to region." 

The firm offers three main products: an intelligent advisor for private banking clients, a white-label advisor for retail banking and wealth management consumers and an API developer hub.

Partners And Clients

“So, normally, you call us, you meet us, you see us,” Phillips said. 

Bambu is concerned with platform building only, he said. 

“We are a B2B company; so we don’t go out and build our own funds. We don’t try to persuade customers that we can beat the market.”

Though Bambu offers ready-to-go robos, their nontraditional B2B sales experience is focused on customizability, not standardization, the CEO said. 

For example, Bambu interacted with Refinitiv, a global financial markets data and infrastructure provider, over the building of a robo-advising tool for private bankers in the digital wealth space.

"They contacted us [and] paid us to build a private banking tool [that] was then used by Standard and Chartered on the Refinitiv platform." 


Bambu is not regulated because it is a tech company, but the company only engages in regulated activities, Phillips said. 

“We don’t hold customer data and we don’t hold customer money. In saying that, all of our customers are regulated, so we have to ensure that as a platform we fit the criteria that our licensed entity needs to have to use the fintech platform.”

The Monetary Authority of Singapore has been extremely supportive in promoting fintech innovation and fair regulation, the CEO said. 

The Vision

“Our sole focus is to be the world’s best company at building robo-advisors,” the Bambu CEO said. 

A decade ago, digital banks did not exist, he said.

"Today, every bank must have online banking; a lot of banks still use fintech APIs to enhance their online banking. We think robo is going the same way.”

Bambu aims to be recognized as a leader in the space. In five years' time, the plan is to exceed $50 million in recurring revenue, with a minimum of 100 clients.

Until then, “I’m a day-by-day guy," Phillips said. "We’ll do the best we can every day." 

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Courtesy photo. 


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