Click to listen to the latest episode of The Richards Report featuring Nutmeg co-founder Nick Hungerford.
Nick Hungerford is originally from the UK and, after a period of time working in wealth management, he moved to California to complete his MBA. While studying at Stanford University, Nick identified the opportunity that technology now presents to bring professional wealth management to everyone. He came up with the idea of providing investment management online, in what is now known around the world as ‘robo-advice’. He and his co-founders called the business Nutmeg.
Back in the 17th and 18th centuries, the spice of nutmeg was the most expensive delicacy in the world. Ship workers in Liverpool and New York weren’t even allowed pockets in their trousers for fear that they may have been stealing it – a stolen nutmeg would have been enough to retire on! So nutmeg was originally something only the rich could afford that is now available for everyone. What a great name for a service that makes professional wealth management – previously available only to the super-rich – accessible for everyone.
Nutmeg is now Europe’s biggest robo-adviser, located in the UK, and Nick’s story of how his original idea has evolved is fascinating.
For someone who has achieved so much in such a short period of time, Nick is incredibly humble and open about what he has learned along the way.
We discuss how, despite investment advice being among the most important decisions people make in their lives, they’re more likely to compare restaurants for a meal than financial advisers. As we witnessed through the Banking Royal Commission in Australia, investment advice is traditionally not a transparent industry. It takes a lot of time and paperwork to establish a relationship with an adviser so people often go with the first person they meet. Technology helps by improving transparency.
Nick talks about his good friend and mentor, John Beshears. John was one of my lecturers at Harvard Business School, and I spoke with John in a series of episodes of the podcast about behavioural economics and the psychology of how we make decisions. Those episodes are available here.
Nick has since stepped away from Nutmeg and is involved in a venture capital fund in Singapore called Portage. Nick is a digital ambassador for the UK Department of International Trade, a member of the European Power 50, and recipient of Spears Entrepreneur of the year award.
Similar to the way Nutmeg has changed wealth management in the UK, Six Park is an Australian robo-adviser that uses technology to provide professional wealth management to all Australians. To take Six Park’s free risk assessment and get an investment recommendation, click the “Get Started” button below.