Do you go to investment conferences? I’m on the financial advisor conference circuit regularly; especially those that include ETF strategy content. One thing I’ve noticed though is that the overall quality of the conferences, content, speakers and venues have been on the decline. As advisors, our time is becoming more and more valuable. So, you might be going to fewer and fewer conferences these days too. 

Fast forward. Earlier this year I was chatting with Barry Ritholtz and Josh Brown about this. It seemed to be a pet peeve of theirs too. So, they’ve made a commitment to revive the financial advisor conference in the form of WealthStack. The Ritholz Team has partnered with InsideETFs to bring the modern day financial advisor meetup that brings current content, dynamic speakers, a great setting and a social buzz that just isn’t around today. The ETF Trends and ETF Database team is excited to get involved. I’ll be hosting the ETF Smackdown which will kick off the first full day of programming.

Read my chat with Josh about the conference below. Maybe you’ll want to join us. I hope you do.

What do you get when you combine investing plus tech? For the organizers behind the inaugural WealthStack conference Sept. 8-10 in Scottsdale, AZ, the answer is “The Future of Advice.”

The conference is being dubbed as the first event of its kind, bridging the gap between technology, investment management and practice management.

It aims to address the current technological disruption in the industry, giving advisors much-needed insight to be able to future-proof their business and thrive.

The conference is a partnership between Inside ETFs and Josh Brown and Barry Ritholz of RItholtz Wealth Management. 

Q&A With Josh Brown About WealthStack

Tom: What is WealthStack and how was this concept born?

Josh: The idea behind Wealth/Stack was to do a program that would be a combination of wealth management and tech stack discussions for the modern, progressive advisor. We felt that there weren’t many conferences that blend the two concepts well enough.

Josh Brown

Josh Brown

Tom: Since this is conference by advisors, for advisors, what do you think will be the biggest difference from other conferences throughout the year?

Josh: Barry, myself, Ben Carlson and Michael Batnick did the majority of the curation in terms of who and what we’re putting on stage. We are very immersed in the industry and subject matter and we asked ourselves “If we were attending an event, what would the ideal situation be?” Many conference organizers can’t do this because they’re on the outside.

Tom: Conferences can be a little sterile. Can you elaborate on how you are making WealthStack a little more lively?

Josh: If you know me, then you already know that I don’t do sterile. Our F-bomb-to-panel ratio is going to be off the charts.

Tom: What new formats are you most excited to see in action? Are there any you are nervous about?

Josh: We’re really interested to see how many advisors take us up on the Stack Social Studio thing we’re setting up in the exhibit hall – this is probably the first conference that’s got a podcast and video solution set up for anyone who wants to come and make content, complete with an on-staff engineer to teach them the tricks of the trade. I’m also really excited about Stack Stadium – a dedicated amphitheater with venture-backed fintech startups doing demos all day for advisors who pass through. I’m a little nervous about some of the parties and afterparties we have planned. I hope I make it home to my wife in one piece.

Tom: At the conclusion of WealthStack, what do you think advisors will be saying about it when comparing it to other conferences they’ve attended?

Josh: I have to be honest – I find myself bored at a lot of events because advisors can be a bit stuffy and formal. We’re hoping to shake things up to enough of a degree that people relax and really get into it. We know how important the networking component of an event can be, so we’ve really amped up the environment for this to be the most fun and engaging networking opportunity of the year. Everyone who’s anyone in the industry is going to be there. I’m telling you, it’s lit.

To register for the conference or learn more, click here.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.

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