Hardbacon strikes partnership to boost Desjardins’ online brokerage capabilities

Former Les Affaires reporter Julien Brault’s startup picked up a major client Thursday when Desjardins Group announced it partnered with the fintech company Hardbacon. The partnership will use Hardbacon’s millennial-friendly investment education tools enhance Desjardins’ online brokerage.

It’s a major sign of the tremendous rise of do-it-yourself investing as lower-fee investment options continues to rise.

According to the National Post’s Armina Ligaya, the partnership with Hardbacon gives the online brokerage’s clients access to stock and portfolio analysis tools on the fintech’s mobile app, as well as a six-hour online investment course, while new clients get 10 free trades within one year on Desjardins Online Brokerage.

Brault, chief executive of Hardbacon, told the post that portfolio analysis software has been around for a few years, but has typically been targeted towards institutional investors, and not average Joes or Jills. Hardbacons tools help to empower regular investors, he said.

Desjardins paid Hardbacon an undisclosed amount to offer the fintech’s services to their clients.

Desjardins Group, the largest co-operative financial group in Canada, is the latest company to rollout enhanced options for self-directed trading at a lower cost. TD Bank Group recently announced a deal with fintech Hydrogen Technology Corp. to enhance its TD WebBroker platform for do-it-yourself investors and later launch a robo-adviser platform.

The partnership makes sense on several levels for Desjardins Group. Desjardins Online Brokerage’s business development manager Louis D’Anjou told the Financial Post that more and more of its clientele is within the 18 to 30 age demographic, up 200 per cent compared to a year ago. The online brokerage has roughly 105,00 clients currently, he said.

Moreover, interest in self-directed investing is rapidly growing with trades on their platform up 25 per cent in 2018 compared to last year.

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