KnowIT acquires Strategy Steps

13-Oct-2016

By Sarah Kendell

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A new fintech business owned by wealth management industry veteran Wayne Wilson has acquired professional services consulting firm Strategy Steps.

At a media event yesterday, Strategy Steps co-founders Louise Biti and Assyat David announced they were transitioning the business, along with its online strategic advice platform, Desk Caddie, over to the new ownership of knowIT group, which Wilson would head up along with former MYOB professional services manager Wendy Tyberek and ex-Rubik chief information officer Andrew Roberts.

Commenting on the sale, Biti said given the likely future progression of the advice industry, it made sense to hand Strategy Steps over to a management team with specialist distribution and IT know-how, leaving Biti and David to focus on their second business, Aged Care Steps.

“Assyat and I have spent a lot of time thinking about where we think we can add the best value into advisers and practice processes, and one of the things that we want to be able to do is free up our time to be able to focus on the opportunities arising from Aged Care Steps,” she said.

“What Desk Caddie really needs is to have a better software platform that can integrate into the way financial planners give advice and be more seamless, and KnowIT are going to be better placed to take it to the next level.”

Wilson, whose career has spanned senior roles at Rubik, Asgard, Perpetual and MLC, said the company was a great fit for the trend towards technology-led strategic advice that knowIT was looking to capitalise on, with recent TransferWise research revealing 20 per cent of global consumers would transact purely online within 10 years when it came to financial services.

“Digitalisation is driving everything that is happening in financial services, so for us Desk Caddie and Strategy Steps is a digitalisation play,” he said.

“Desk Caddie has the most comprehensive knowledge base on wealth advice in Australia, and our task is to find different ways to cut that up and deliver it for different audiences – we hope to make it more connected, more effective and to work within different architectures and dealer groups.”

The sale was effective as of 1 October, with Biti and David remaining in the business over the next six months to transition clients across to the new ownership team.

Following this, knowIT will retain the two original owners as strategic advisers for a further 12 months.

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