Meet Quorus — A Demo Day[s] 10 Presenting Startup

This year, FinTech Sandbox Demo Day[s] will take place across two days, April 9 & April 11. The presentations will be virtual and the event, as always, is free. Demo Days are exciting because we get to showcase startups that are on the very cutting edge of innovation and you get to see what they’re up to before they’re discovered.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll highlight a few of this year’s presenting entrepreneurs. Today, we’re talking to John Hill, Co-Founder and CEO of Connecticut- based Quorus, which is partnering with asset and wealth managers to offer customizable, tax-managed investment portfolios based on the manager’s proprietary investment strategies. Quorus is presenting on April 11.

John Hill, Quorus CEO, to present at Fintech Sandbox Demo Day[s] 10.


Q.   John, tell us a bit about Quorus. What problems are you solving?

A.   Quorus partners with asset managers to offer their investment strategies in personalized, tax-efficient accounts.

Q.   What is your company’s origin story?

A.   Scott Shumway and I founded Quorus to help asset managers make the transition to custom portfolio based offers. I lived the transition firsthand building Vanguard’s direct indexing pilot. Looking out at the market, I felt like direct indexing and passive was getting all the did not feel like there was a good partner for firms that did not run all passive strategies. We built Quorus to help them.

Q.   Can you describe what it’s been like to be part of the FinTech Sandbox community?

A.   Being a member has been an incredible asset for our development. Investment data is incredibly expensive and fragmented. The Data Access Residency program allowed us to work with a range of data partners, explore our needs, and ultimately find a data partner in FactSet that would help us accelerate our product. Aside from data access, the broader network of founders and partners that we have been able to engage with has been tremendous.

Q.   Why is data access important to your startup?

A.   Data is the life blood of our offering. Everything we do requires accurate market data, from partnering with asset managers to build a bespoke tax methodology, running backtests, maintaining custom risk models, running our UI and portfolio management process. Data is everywhere. Without investment data, we do not have a company.

Q.   What milestones has Quorus achieved so far?

A.   We have hit a few. We launched the first version of our product last year and closed our first round of institutional funding. Since then, we have grown the team, signed asset manager partners and advisor firms, grown our firm assets under management, and continued to evolve the product. We have a tremendous ways to go, but we are proud of the progress we have made and excited at the partnerships we continue to add and expand.

Q.   What trends in fintech are you most excited about?

A.   We continue to be excited by the growing interest in customized investing. By giving asset managers the means to offer their strategies in this product structure, we can expand access to high quality investment strategies, give investors more choice in how they invest their money, and ultimately provide advisors a better way to serve their clients. Outside of this, we are excited by the continued growth of the independent wealth management channel and of course, remain very interesting in seeing how generative AI continues to mature.

Q.   How does Quorus think about leveraging AI in a differentiated way?

A.   We believe that we are a long way off from having AI run client portfolios, which is our core value proposition. That said, we are exploring interesting use cases that can improve our internal operational efficiency and help portfolio managers in their process.

Q.   What’s next for Quorus?

A.   We continue to work closely with firms that are in various stages of due diligence and offer design. We look forward to bringing these relationships to market this year. In addition to deepening our existing relationships, we continue to add new partner firms. We value working with firms who are eager to roll up their sleeves, and co-design a product that fits the unique nature of their business.


To hear more about Quorus and 11 other exciting fintech startups, be sure to register for FinTech Sandbox Demo Day[s] 10!

The New Faces of Fintech — Featuring DAIZY

While we may not know exactly how fintech will impact our future, we have an idea as to who will be leading the charge. In the next installments of our ongoing blog series, “The New Faces of Fintech”, we will spotlight some of the emerging leaders in the fintech world to get their thoughts on what the future of the industry will look like.

Their origin stories are different, their paths to entrepreneurship are unique, but their impacts on their respective industries are significant. No one truly knows what the future of fintech holds, but these industry leaders may have an inkling as to what we can expect.

Our next guest is Deborah Yang, CEO & Co-Founder of DAIZY. DAIZY Scribe (currently in private beta) allows you to generate personalized financial content in seconds with compliant data, real-time calculations, and dynamic infographics and do so at scale. Deborah is based in Paris.

Deborah Yang, CEO of DAIZY, is featured in New Faces of Fintech

Deborah, tell us a little bit about your background. What were you working on before founding this company?

Before DAIZY, I was Global Head of Sustainable Indexes at MSCI, leading high-growth franchises including factor indexes, EMEA index, and Asia regions across 18 years. I am also the Co-President of Women in ETFs EMEA.

Tell us a bit about your company? What’s the problem you’re solving?

DAIZY combines compliant financial data, real-time calculation engines, and large language models (LLMs) to bring generative AI solutions to the financial services industry. We enable financial insights and communications production with unprecedented scale, authority, efficiency, and customization.

What’s the origin story behind your company? How and why did you come up with the idea?

We fundamentally believe that the wealth management and broader financial services industry is suffering the consequences of legacy technology and disparate data. The time for firms to make a technological leap is now, and with the adoption of AI there will be massive change and disruption in the industry.

Start-ups are all about the team. Working with Jonty Hurwitz, a veteran tech-founder with a track record including the unicorn FinTech company, Wonga, has been amazing because he is always 10 steps ahead of everyone else in dreaming up “the art of the possible”. We also brought on Jim Wiandt, the visionary behind and InsideETFs, because of his deep ties in the wealth and financial services industry. We have the best of the best from seasoned leaders, and we will need to continue to attract the next generation of builders. Together, we have a lot of ideas and potential, but right now we’re laser focused on scalable product-market fit for DAIZY Scribe — our first B2B platform for asset and wealth management firms.

What milestones has your company achieved so far?

We launched our B2B platform beta, DAIZY Scribe, in December 2023.

Immediately after launch, we started running implementations with leading asset management firms and platforms.

We were one of the first investment providers with a plug-in live in the OpenAI plug-in store, seeing huge numbers of queries coming from users.

We have built a team of genuine industry leaders in our business to oversee client implementations and will continue to build to remain agile in this evolving industry.

Can you describe what it’s been like to be part of the Fintech Sandbox community?

As a recent addition to Fintech Sandbox, we’ve already found the experience beneficial. We’ve been impressed with the speed of being able to arrange meetings with partners and the quality of people.

Access to reliable, high-quality data is crucial for the industry. Especially with the widespread concern of ‘hallucinations’ by large language models, we are committed to only using best-in-class data. For financial services firms, trust and accuracy are paramount.

What’s next for your company?

We are highly focused on deepening our scalable product-market fit by adding more Skills for DAIZY Scribe. Our implementations enable us to stay closely aligned with clients’ usage and make direct ties to the amplification of their human capital and revenue growth.

What is some of the best advice you’ve received as a startup founder?

Marc Andreesen famously believes that “only” product-market-fit matters. Though it’s a great point, the question is, how do you get there?

For us, we’re focused on three key areas: 1) building a world-class team by hiring the best talent and ensuring they are agile, 2) listening proactively to clients’ needs and pain points and constantly asking questions, and 3) combining 1 + 2 into a product that adds undeniable value to our clients’ businesses.

We believe we have those pieces at DAIZY, and we know we need to continually prove that. To solve the investing industry’s most daunting problems, first we must earn and maintain our clients’ trust. It’s the only way to bring AI solutions to our industry and generate the ROI we know we can for our clients.

What fintech trends are you most excited about right now?

AI in fintech has captured the industry’s imagination. The adoption of AI in wealth and financial services industry will revolutionize the industry in a way that I have not witnessed in my 25 years in financial services. It will be a step function transformation that will quickly separate the winners and the losers in the space because of the opportunity for massive productivity gains.

Are you hiring?

We anticipate the need for product builders, developers, and client-facing teams as we manage increasing customer demand for our AI solutions.

We’re thrilled to feature some of the incredible entrepreneurs who are participating in our Data Access Residency. If you are aware of any fintech entrepreneurs with an early stage company who could benefit from free access to data, cloud hosting, and a supportive community, please have them visit our website to learn more.