Skience, a consulting firm and technology platform provider to wealth management firms, has tapped Kyle Van Pelt as its new executive vice president of sales. Van Pelt was previously with SS&C Advent.
Van Pelt will be responsible for leading the sales and relationship management teams and interfacing with current and prospective clients. He’s also charged with accelerating the company’s sales growth, evenly split between the consulting and platform businesses, and contributing to marketing efforts. Herndon, Va.-based Skience currently serves over 110 clients across both businesses, including broker/dealers, registered investment advisors and fintech firms, said Marc Butler, Skience’s president and chief operating officer. Roughly 15,000 to 16,000 advisors currently use the platform.
The news comes as Skience pivots its strategy toward providing a broader range of wealth management technology to firms, Butler said.
“The messaging primarily is pivoting towards us as a platform in wealth management, whether it’s for an enterprise or a registered investment advisor,” Butler said. “Most people in our space know Skience as being integrated with Salesforce, know us from a new account opening standpoint. When I came in, I started to think differently about this platform question. Less about us being a point solution for someone and more about us solving a broad set of needs and challenges.”
While Skience works within the Salesforce CRM system, it also works with other CRM providers. The platform includes new account opening, client onboarding, digital signatures and digital forms processes. It also provides data aggregation—the ability to pull in data from multiple custodians into the platform. Skience provides key integrations with big financial planning providers, including Envestnet, MoneyGuidePro and eMoney. Skience won a 2020 WealthManagement.com Industry Award for Technology Providers: Client Onboarding/New Account Opening.
“The biggest reason I joined is that I believe Skience provides a digital home-office for these large enterprise firms to make their operations work just as smoothly in a work-from-home/remote environment as it does when they’re working in the office, shoulder-to-shoulder,” Van Pelt said. “When I looked out at the rest of the space, I don’t know if I saw any other platform the way that Skience can.”
Butler joined Skience in August from BNY Mellon/Albridge, where he served as chief operating officer and managing director. Since then, he’s been making a number of changes to the firm’s marketing and product development strategies.
Butler said the company has been seeing an uptick in interest from smaller RIAs, some of which is due to the recent merger of Schwab and TD Ameritrade. “A 1,000-percent reliance on their custodian for all their solutions and tools isn’t necessarily where they want to be from a business planning standpoint,” he said.