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Morgan Stanley Gears Up to Aim Robo at High-Net-Worth Clients

January 29, 2016

Morgan Stanley is boosting its digital capabilities by snagging a key digital exec from Charles Schwab’s retail robo-advice platform to develop its own proposition aimed at younger and high-net-worth clients, according to InvestmentNews.

Naureen Hassan has been appointed chief digital officer for wealth management at Morgan Stanley, where she will focus on strategy and marketing of digital offerings, according to the news service.

This is the latest move among large brokerages, including Citigroup and Voya Financial, appointing execs to spearhead digital platforms, Bloomberg writes.

Morgan Stanley plans to focus its energies on high-net-worth clients but the focus on digital is also designed to attract a younger generation of customers, a source familiar with the company tells InvestmentNews.

The company has been focused on digital for the past few months, with Gregory Fleming, former wealth management president at Morgan Stanley, suggesting in October that a robo advisor may be in the works, according to the publication.

Naureen Hassan

And earlier this month, Jim Rosenthal, chief operating officer at Morgan Stanley and one of the people to which Hassan will report, was appointed to lead the development of the company’s digital services, InvestmentNews writes.

In addition to Rosenthal, Hassan will also report to wealth co-heads Shelley O’Connor and Andy Saperstein, a Morgan Stanley spokesman tells Bloomberg. Back at Schwab, Neesha Hathi, previously head of Schwab Performance Technologies at Schwab Advisor Services, will take over Hassan’s position, InvestmentNews writes.

By Alex Padalka
  • To read the Bloomberg article cited in this story, click here.
  • To read the InvestmentNews article cited in this story, click here.