SoftBank's Atom Backing A Nod To Online Retail Investing Allure

SoftBank’s Atom Backing A Nod To Online Retail Investing Allure

June 23, 2021 at 11:51PM

Retail investing is getting a bit crowded, and platforms are the rage – but data, as one might say, makes the difference.

As reported on Wednesday (June 23) by The Wall Street Journal, SoftBank is leading a funding round (through its Latin America fund) that will put $28 million in the online investing platform Atom Finance, with a focus on providing institutional-level resources to the retail investing realm.

You may be familiar with the rise of the investing platforms, which in many cases lure younger, tech-savvy individuals to sites to invest, and in some cases to speculate.

Robinhood is but one (highly visible) example, where users have flocked onto the site and into any number of marquee “meme” names such as GameStop and other holdings.

But as noted by Atom in its own release announcing that the focus is on software and data. Eric Shoykhet, founder and CEO, said Atom was created “to provide unparalleled access to institutional investing resources and tools, filling the white space between overpriced, clunky institutional platforms and antiquated websites tailored to retail investors.” In part, the funding will also be used to “accelerate our B2B product integration efforts with financial institutions.” according to the release.

The most recent investment values the firm at $150 million.

In an interview with the Miami Herald, Shoykhet said Atom serves as an alternative to financial information that can be gleaned by (and for) retail investors from Google, to name but one example.

“This is for under-served professionals who maybe work at a Fortune 500 in a strategy group, or as a registered investment advisor, or at a consulting firm or venture capital group that doesn’t have access to a $10,000 or $20,000 S&P or Bloomberg terminal,” Shoykhet told the Herald. “Someone who is looking for something robust but not at a crazy price point, and for a better mobile experience.” The tools are not aimed at professional traders, he noted.

Digitizing the Financial World 

And in a nod toward the digitization of all things financial, Atom said earlier this year that it had struck its first product integration partnership with Inter, a Brazil-based digital bank.

The growth is certainly not limited to the U.S. or Latin America. As noted in this space last month, U.K. stock brokerage firms AJ Bell and Charles Stanley are focusing on individuals with savings built up from during the pandemic. As had been reported, the investment platforms are introducing new products geared toward younger investors.

There’s certainly some financial dry kindling there – some estimates contend that there is as much as $250 trillion in global wealth that has taken shape as markets have remained buoyant and household wealth has grown.

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