My friend Rikki Tahta, with the help of his partners Perry Blacher and Simon Veingard have worked tirelessly building out a seriously deep, but simple way to build a publicly verifiable, money management track record. Union Square Ventures has a deep look at the reasons Covestor was worthy of an investment .
Spark Capital led the investment along with Union Square Investors. here is board memeber Albert Wenger of Union Square on the opportunity:
One might ask why anybody would want to share their great investment ideas with the world in the form of a detailed track record. Probably some are doing it simply as a competitive sport. Many participate because Covestor offers a vibrant community of active investors who learn from each other. Others, however, do it because they realize the value of an established and verifiable track record. For now they would have to “monetize” this track record elsewhere, in the same way that great coders don’t get paid for their contributions to open source projects, but the recognition of the community can translate into a promotion or a paid speaking engagement or book contract. We are excited about our investment in Covestor because of the possibility for going much further by creating a platform to enable talented individual investors to compete directly in the trillion dollar market for money management. Instead of having to join an existing firm or go through the difficult and expensive process of trying to form their own firm, Covestor will handle asset management, and these individual investors will be able to concentrate on picking winning investments. We are convinced that opening up the asset management market to talented individuals will be as fundamentally disruptive to this huge industry as blogging has been for journalism (what would Mike Arrrington’s or Om Malik’s influence be if they were working for the San Jose Mercury News?).
If you were to look very closely you would see me as an early investor (Roger too) and adding a teeny weeny more.
Here is Rikki on Wallstrip from way back talking about the business: