Back in 2010 Paul Roberts lost £40k from advice to buy a stock he was given by a major UK stockbroker. Weeks after the stock recommendation was made, the stock price collapsed, the company went into administration and Paul lost all his investment.
“When I tried to find out about the pick that was made, the research, stock picker and their track record of success in the market I was blanked at every turn by this well-known stock broker. I realised there was virtually zero accountability and transparency in the equity advice market for smaller investors and, if this was happening to me, then it was happening to millions of investors all over the world,” says Roberts.
That was when the idea for Stockomendation started to form.
Scroll forward to today and this North Wales-based business has offices in London and provides an award-winning FinTech platform to over 15,000 investors as well as several major financial media and wealth management companies.
Stockomendation makes quantitative sense out of the qualitative noise in stock markets and aims to assist and connect time poor investors with stock pickers, publications and institutions that give advice about what shares to buy, sell and hold.
The platform helps creates accountability and transparency in the research market and builds trust by tracking the current and historical performances of stock pickers and their picks. By doing so Stockomendation creates a ‘trusted stock picker’ status that can help de-risk investing in the stock market for smaller investors and so increase the chances of them seeing a return on their investments.
In 2015 its UK beta platform was attributed Fintech50 status for its potential to be transformative in the equities market. Since then the company has been rapidly developing its technology and fine-tuning the business model.
“Not enough people invest in the stock market because they are afraid to do so,. They may have lost money in the past or simply don’t know what to do as it can be quite confusing,” explains Roberts. “Our mission is to help investors reduce their level of risk and increase their level of knowledge and chances of success by showing them who is a stock picker that can be trusted for them to follow and connect with. This in turn acts as a free marketing resource for stock pickers.”
Stockomendation has recently signed agreements with Associated Newspapers Ltd – the first part of which is to run its Stock Picking Game on the This is Money website. The aim of the game is to find the best amateur stock picker in the UK and educate players to hopefully encourage new investors to make money out of investing in the stock market – just one part of its plan to attract over 1 million investors to its platform in the next few years.
That type of ambitious growth might yet call for an office expansion. For the time being though Roberts and his team are happy to keep building the business out of their development offices in an 18th century converted church. As he put it: “In business you always need a little help from above and our offices certainly provide that”.