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Morningstar Partnering With TIFIN's Magnifi on Direct Indexing

Magnifi's natural language-powered search engine and product marketplace is getting thematic baskets built on Morningstar equity analyst research.

TIFIN Group announced today that its Magnifi subsidiary will now begin offering portfolios of “innovation stocks” to end investors based on indexes designed by Morningstar.

Through the new offering, investors can access thematic bundles of equities without ETF or mutual fund wrappers directly through Magnifi, bringing direct indexing directly to individuals.

While this new offering is initially being targeted at end investors, it is also available on the advisor side (Magnifi Pro) but the trade execution has higher minimums, according to TIFIN Group CEO Vinay Nair.

“The managed portfolios at Magnifi were designed, curated and the stock selection has been made by industry experts, not peer curated or picked by amateurs—this is part of our overall view of democratizing intelligence and not just products,” said Nair, when asked how this differed from the approach previously taken by Motif Investing, which was acquired by Schwab in 2020.

“The key differentiator is that we provide the starting point: Someone says ‘Hey, I want to buy into big data’ and they will then leverage our [Morningstar’s] forward-looking equity research, which Magnifi is then going to personalize for them,” said Rolf Agther, head of research and product for Morningstar Indexes.

With this initial launch, investors can access themes that include digital infrastructure, electric and autonomous vehicles, healthcare innovation, fintech, nanotechnology, robotics and big data.

Specifically, Nair said Magnifi would be handle portfolio management to the investor, taking care of trading and ongoing management and execution.

Nair made clear this is only Magnifi’s first partnership foray into thematic investing. He said that while this initial offering was with Morningstar, which is providing the research backing product selection, subsequent partnerships would be with asset managers themselves.

“Several other asset managers will follow and are in the pipeline,” said Nair, though he was not yet at liberty to specify which firms.

It has been a big year for TIFIN Group, having made two acquisitions (Totum Risk and myFinancialAnswers) in March, announced a $22.3 million Series B round in April and the addition of Cathie Wood, head of Ark Investments to its board in July.

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