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Wealthify embarks on the next phase of its growth

Dr Richard Theo, exiting CEO and Co-founder

Wealthify has grown significantly since its launch in 2016, expanding its original offering of Stocks and Shares ISAs and General Investment Accounts to now include award-winning Ethical Investments, Junior Stocks and Shares ISAs, and more recently Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs). 

To help fund this journey, in 2018 Wealthify became majority owned by Aviva and this transaction contained the option for the founders to sell their remaining shares to Aviva. Following the natural progression of Wealthify’s growth, the founders have now exercised this option, and on 4th June 2020, Wealthify became 100% owned by Aviva.

As part of this change, Wealthify today announces that Andrew Russell has been appointed as its new Chief Executive.  Andrew has worked for Aviva for eleven years and has over 20 years’ experience in financial services.  With many years of direct-to-consumer savings, investments and leadership experience, Andrew is well placed to lead Wealthify on the next stage of its evolution whilst nurturing the Wealthify personality that continues to drive its growth.  Andrew is passionate about Wealthify’s mission to help people make their money work harder through affordable and accessible investing.

Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, Dr Richard Theo, will leave the business. Richard Avery-Wright will stand down as Chairman and member of the Investment Committee at a time that is right for the business. Michelle Pearce-Burke will continue with the business in her post as Chief Investment Officer and Chief Operating Officer, together with the five other members of the Senior Leadership Team.

Dr Richard Theo, exiting CEO and Co-founder, said:

‘I have achieved my ambition to create a digital investment service that cuts through complexity and makes investing accessible to everyone, regardless of wealth or experience.

I am immensely proud of the Wealthify team; I believe we have built a world-class brand and platform which delivers a beautifully simple investing experience that customers love.

It has been a wonderful and challenging experience to take Wealthify from a humble start up with a huge ambition to a lean, high-performing business that is ready to scale and go on to even greater success.

This is the right time for me to exit the business, and I wish my brilliant colleagues every success for what is sure to be a bright future.

I will be continuing to support ActiveQuote, which I founded in 2009, and where I remain as a shareholder and director. I will also be pushing on with FinTech Wales which we set up last year to power up the Welsh FinTech Ecosystem, and to fulfil my ongoing duties as UK Government’s FinTech Envoy for Wales, once the Covid-19 crisis has passed. As an entrepreneur, I will also be keeping a keen eye open for interesting new opportunities within the FinTech arena and perhaps beyond too.”

Andrew Russell, new CEO of Wealthify, said:

“I’m delighted to join the business at such an exciting time.

In Wealthify, Richard has set up a great leadership team, agile technology, and an inspiring start-up culture, that together has created an accessible, award-winning ‘robo’ investment tool.

It feels like now is the right time in the company’s evolution to fully join up the creativity and agility of Wealthify with the strength and experience of Aviva, and I am looking forward to leading the next phase of Wealthify’s growth.

We will remain focused on simplicity, affordability and transparency, as well as our ambition to bring the benefits of investing to mass-market savers.  I thank Richard for all he has done for the company and its customers, and I wish him every success as he moves to focus on his next challenge.”

Wealthify’s 40-strong team will continue to be based at their headquarters at Tec Marina in Penarth, on the outskirts of Cardiff.