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T3: Data Aggregator PCR Integrates With Schwab

Schwab wants to get away from binary file transfers, said Private Client Resources CEO Bob Miller, but adoption is a sticking point.

In a sign that Charles Schwab’s commitment to third-party integrations is moving forward, data aggregator Private Client Resources announced its participation in the OpenView Gateway program at T3 in Denton, Texas. The integration will help Schwab better serve its institutional and family office businesses, while PCR will benefit from a tighter connection to the data it’s relied on from Schwab for over a decade. PCR serves advisors working with ultra-high-net-worth families, private banks and multifamily offices.

“The integration will allow us to share data and offer UHNW and family office clients, as well as Schwab advisors, an efficiently managed total view of their investments, including automated alternative/illiquid and held-away assets,” said PCR CEO Bob Miller in a statement. He explained that Schwab wants to cultivate a culture where more fintech companies can be involved with the firm and that he sees PCR as a “torchbearer” in facilitating that process.

For its part, Schwab is continuing its systematic push to integrate with outside parties. “We continually work to provide the most comprehensive platform possible to advisors and family office clients,” said John Connor, VP in Schwab’s digital advisor solutions group. “Collaboration with industry leaders like PCR is critical to helping these advisors focus on building client relationships and scale their businesses.”

Miller also addressed some of the criticisms that Schwab has received about its tech infrastructure, which Andrew Salesky, Schwab's head of advisory technology, described as “mainframe technology” last year. “Their bigger problem isn’t the tech,” he said, “it’s an adoption thing.”

When advisors and their support staff are entrenched in a traditional way of doing things, new solutions can seem unsteady or fraught with potential problems. “You’re banging up against the old ways of doing things,” explained Miller. “There’s a surety to them.”

“People cling to these old means and cultural habits,” he added. “But if services can’t be performed in an efficient and modern manner, then they become cost prohibitive and nobody benefits.”

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