Invest for kids
Sustainable ESG portfolios
Invest for kids
Sustainable ESG portfolios
Noah Kerner is the CEO and Chairman of Acorns, the largest subscription service in U.S. consumer finance specializing in making investing accessible to everyday Americans. Acorns is a global company with nearly 6 million subscribers and three distinct products across five countries, including GoHenry, a leader in money management and financial education for kids, and Pixpay, a leading European money manager for teens. To date, Kerner and Acorns have helped millions of everyday Americans save and invest over $19 billion. Kerner is a 5X entrepreneur, including as the founder of shareholder rights startup Say, music production company Soundproof, and the leading product development & marketing agency for the young adult market, Noise. By the time Noise was acquired, the agency had created hundreds of product and marketing campaigns, including Facebook’s very first application, Chase’s credit card to reward responsibility rather than spending, and Vice's music site Noisey. Kerner has advised and invested in a variety of fast-growing startups, including WeWork, where he also served as the company’s first Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer. An arts enthusiast with a passion for philanthropy, Kerner is the author of “Chasing Cool” with Gene Pressman, former CEO of Barneys New York and got his start as a teenager DJing in nightclubs across NYC and performing with artists like Jennifer Lopez. Noah was born in New York City’s East Village, where he still resides, and is a graduate of Cornell University.
My apartment in New York City. I love it and it keeps appreciating. That's the best kind of value.
Try to never make decisions driven by fear. But since we all get afraid sometimes, I think it's good to just take a long walk in the sun before making a big investment decision.
I've always hoped investing allows me to get involved in things that bring me pleasure and/or create positive change in the world - whether it's an apartment for myself or a great company advancing society.
I don't really splurge. I've been wearing the same t-shirts since I was 18.
Disclosure: Answers to the Q & A are not meant as investment advice and should not be read as recommendations to buy or sell securities.
Seth Wunder, CFA, is the Chief Investment Officer of Acorns. As CIO, Seth is responsible for overseeing investment products, including product development, investment operations and compliance. He also oversees the company’s legal, finance, and accounting groups. Previously, Seth founded Los Angeles-based black-and-white Capital LP as its sole Portfolio Manager in May 2016, with assets at peak greater than one billion dollars. black-and-white Capital’s investment mandate centered on innovation, including a concentration in software, internet, fintech, e-commerce and other disruptive trends. Before black-and-white Capital, Seth was a founding partner and portfolio manager at Contour Asset Management LLC, in New York. During the almost seven years of operating Contour, he led growth in assets from approximately $500mn to over $1.5bn. Seth started his career over two decades ago as an equity analyst at two mutual fund complexes: OppenheimerFunds and Morgan Stanley Investment Management. He holds a B.S. in Applied Economics and Business Management from Cornell University.
Starbucks (SBUX), we love the brand and the product! In 2008, my wife owned it in her 401k, and we have continued to stick with it. The stock was below $10 then and it’s over $100 today.
It’s important to leave emotions out of investment decisions. I’ve found it helpful to write down a couple sentences on why to buy or sell an investment. The process of writing down the decision brings clarity and discipline to your financial decisions.
Peace of mind in retirement.
I loved video games as a kid and owned EA stock at that time - I sold it and splurged on something (I can’t even remember what). If I had stuck with it, 25+ years later it would be worth dramatically more money - $100 then would be worth nearly $15,000 today.
Liz Nie is the General Counsel & Corporate Secretary of Acorns Grow Inc. Liz oversees the global legal function for the company's three products across five countries: Acorns, GoHenry and PixPay. Before joining Acorns, Liz was the Global Head of Commercial, Product & WeWork Workplace, Legal, at WeWork, and Vice President, Corporate Legal Affairs, at NBCUniversal, a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation. Liz was trained as a general corporate attorney at Cravath, Swaine and & Moore LLP where she managed securities, banking and M&A transactions. She grew up in Beijing and Brooklyn and is a graduate of Princeton University and the University of California, Berkeley School of Law.
It took me over ten years to pay off my college and law school debt but I have never regretted making the investment in my education.
A friend told me to move my savings to a brokerage account to achieve higher returns. It was a lightbulb moment.
I am investing to give my kids the freedom to choose, whether it is with respect to their education, professional pursuits or personal passions.
I usually only splurge on experiences and have no regrets about any of those. I did splurge on my wedding shoes, though. They were barely visible under my dress, I wore them for less than two hours and they've been taking up precious space in our apartment closet for over a decade!
Marissa brings over 20 years of experience in Design, UX, Product and Research. She joins us from Shipt, where she was SVP of Design, Research and Experience Insights. Prior to that, she held design and product leadership roles at LinkedIn, Apartment List, and Adobe. Marissa graduated from Stanford with a BS in Computer Science and an MS in Human Computer Interaction.
My graduate degree. I realized I didn't want to do exactly what I was studying for my undergrad, but instead of entering an unhappy career I decided to invest further in myself and find something I love.
When there is free money, take it! In particular, participate fully in your company's 401k, or at least as much as they match. Learn to budget for a quarter so you can fully participate in your company's ESPP plan. Open accounts that grow tax free. Learn that even the best colleges offer free tuition and/or full financial aid (the Ivy's do for certain financial situations) and apply for every scholarship out there.
I want to retire, travel until I'm bored, and then spend my time volunteering to help people live their best lives. Or maybe those last two together!
I honestly don't have a splurge I regret, but I do on occasion wish I hadn't sold my first house and would have kept it as an investment.
Denise brings over 20 years of extensive Compliance experience with Investment Advisers and Broker Dealers. She was most recently Chief Compliance Officer at Forge Global. Prior to that, she held leadership roles at Synovus Financial Corp and Legacy Advisory Partners. Denise earned her Bachelors of Science degree from St. John’s University and her MBA from Keller Graduate School of Management.
My son's college education. He recently started the University of Southern California as a freshman. As his mother, I carved out a path where his tuition is covered - without incurring debt, thus allowing him to fully focus on his studies. There is the greatest and best investment I can make, in my child.
It's never too early to plan for the future. Make a solid plan and stay on course. Educate children at an early age, so they understand the importance and discipline it takes to strive for and achieve generational wealth.
I hope to get to a place where I stop, pause, look around and say... "Yes, I did it!"
I am methodical with my planning and spending, as a result there aren't any splurges that I would want to take back.
Prior to joining Acorns, Pete worked at AT&T where he was most recently the Vice President of Advanced Analytics & Marketing Technology for the AT&T Consumer Group. He has 20 years of experience leading data teams, including a team of 180 data scientists, data engineers, business analysts and marketing technologists to optimize customer acquisition, reduce retention and maximize CLTV for more than 70M Wireless, TV and Broadband customers. Throughout his career Pete has made it a mission to drive the business with fast actionable analytics and insights. He sits on the Georgia Tech Business Analytics Council, the Facebook Global Measurement Council and patented an algorithm on graphically rendering data. Pete also served in the Army’s 101st Airborne Division. Pete has an AS in Computer Science, a BSBA from Tory University, an MBA in Technology Management from Georgia Tech and a certificate in AI from MIT. Pete has 4 college aged kids he’s counting the days till they’re off his payroll.
My best investment has been in my education. I enlisted in the Army out of high school and after being injured and medically discharged I was faced with the reality of having no job, no education and kids to take care of. I spent years in night school earning an Associates, Bachelors and eventually a Masters Degree. Life is a journey and investing in learning has opened up opportunities for myself and my family I would have never dreamed possible.
It’s never too early to begin investing. Even a small bit put away when you’re young, has the chance to compound and grow.
To keep improving my alpine skills and pursue climbing around the world.
All the things I purchased on credit cards when younger; they seemed so necessary at the time but in hindsight were so costly.
Shilpa brings over 15 years of experience in strategic marketing leadership. For much of her career, she has found herself at the intersection of data and creativity across the US, UK, India and Bangladesh. Prior to Acorns, at CarGurus, she doubled brand awareness making CarGurus the #1 most-visited car shopping site in the US, and the fastest growing car-shopping site in CA and the UK. At Procter & Gamble, she built classic brand marketing muscle with an emphasis on digital performance channels to accelerate growth, working across brands such as Gillette, Old Spice and Pampers. Prior to P&G, she worked on early-stage companies where she launched organic tea brand, Teatulia, and grew a small operation into a 10 store super-market chain, Meena Bazar. Shilpa holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, and a BA from Wesleyan University.
My health - physical, mental & spiritual. From an early age, caring for my health was built into every aspect of life - whether it was eating well, staying active or meditating. I am very grateful to my parents for instilling these practices. They continue to be a cornerstone of my life.
Treat credit like debit - it’s just another way of saying ‘live within your means’ but it stuck with me.
Pursue an alternate career at a later age. I would like to be an arborist or a gardener who cares for the earth.
The baby items that I thought I needed for my kids and never used. Wish I had put that in their Acorns Early accounts!
Daniel brings over 25 years of software, hardware and system design experience to Acorns. Daniel joins Acorns from Amazon where he led product development in Amazon Web Services and Amazon Alexa. Prior to Amazon, Daniel spent over a decade at Dell and Quest Software where he led global teams across 7 countries, developing enterprise software including database management, information security and software developer tools. Daniel earned a B.A. in Physics from the University of California Santa Barbara where he studied as a Regents Scholar. During his time at the university he contributed to the development of the Planck Space Telescope and other projects within the experimental cosmology department. As an engineer, Daniel is named on multiple patents awarded in technology.
Following my curiosity. Taking the time to explore the things I found curious led to exciting and rewarding opportunities in life, business and investing.
Stocks for the Long Run. I was already an active investor and trader when I was turned on to this book by a coworker. It taught me to trade less, but invest more.
I’ve always wanted to go to space. Space travel will become widely accessible in our lifetime. I would like to orbit the Earth, or perhaps visit the moon!
When I was younger, I splurged on an expensive investment club subscription so I wouldn’t have to research stocks on my own. To pay for it, I sold shares of Netflix. I knew it would be a successful company, but didn’t know just how successful. Had I not sold my original investment, it would be worth over $6M!
Kennedy wasn’t looking for an in-house role when she took on Acorns as a client through her content and brand strategy consultancy. The mission and team changed her mind. Today, she works across the organization to bring our story, values, and vision to life. Previously, she started Kennedy Reynolds Consulting and partnered with clients from Under Armour to Microsoft on writing, content strategy and brand identity. Kennedy created the Brand and Storytelling Team at Zeno Group, a Daniel J. Edelman agency, while Vice President and Head of Digital Content in their New York Office. Her clients included Virgin America, Unilever, WeWork and the NFL. Prior, she was a Content Manager at Edelman, serving two of their largest global accounts.
Kennedy received her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing at the University of London, where she published a collection of short stories and poems written by her class. She received her Bachelor of Arts in English and American Literature and Language at Harvard University.
You can live in the moment and save for later. The two aren't mutually exclusive. Invest a portion of your money regularly, however small, and let that be the pot you never, ever touch. Forget it's there. With the rest, carpe diem.
I hope my children get to see the world and I hope I get to see a bit of it with them.
Outside of travel, all of them.
As Founder, Chairwoman and CEO of The Garcia Companies and TGC Management and Co-Founder of Seven Bucks Companies, Dany Garcia is the visionary architect of some of the most successful enterprises, brands and talent. Her immersive global approach within ever-changing landscapes paired with precise instincts have led to unprecedented box office success and innovative business partnerships across verticals.
With unbridled athleticism as a professional bodybuilder, Garcia also flawlessly pioneers her expansive enterprise while competing at the highest level. Her global audience can expect trailblazing initiatives throughout 2020 and beyond, as Garcia continues to keep human needs and experience at the forefront of her endeavors across the spaces of mental and physical wellness, athletics, entertainment, spirits, finance and more.
In 2019, Garcia, in partnership with Dwayne Johnson, announced one of their most ambitious endeavors to date – Athleticon, a first-of-its-kind community-driven virtual experience. The inaugural, eponymous counterpart, an immersive event experience celebrating the very best in athletics, wellness and entertainment will take place in October 2021 in Atlanta. Most recently, Garcia announced her acquisition of the XFL alongside Johnson and RedBird Capital, making her the first female owner of a major professional sports league.
Garcia's passion for bettering the world through socially responsible decisions is consistently reflected in the culture of her teams and the businesses she builds.
Gabrielle Sulzberger is a seasoned financial executive with over 30 years of experience assisting public and privately held companies in consumer products, retail, financial services and health sciences.
Until August of 2017, Ms. Sulzberger served as Chairman of the board of Whole Foods, where for 13 years she had previously served as Chair of the company’s audit committee. She currently serves on the board of two other public companies, Tel-Aviv based Teva Pharmaceuticals, and Brixmor Property Group, where she chairs the governance committee. Previously Ms. Sulzberger served on the boards of Stage Stores, IndyMac Bank, and Bright Horizons, and numerous private company boards.
For the past twelve years Ms. Sulzberger has served as General Partner of Rustic Canyon/Fontis Partners, a private equity fund based in Pasadena, California. Prior to joining RC/Fontis, Gabrielle served as CFO of several public and private companies, including Gluecode Software, a venture-backed open source software company which was sold to IBM.
Gabrielle is a Trustee of the Ford Foundation. She also serves on the Boards of the WomenCorporateDirectors Foundation, the National Association of Corporate Director’s Audit Advisory Council, Trinity Church Wall Street and she is a Henry Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute. In 2014 she was named a Top 100 Director by the National Association of Corporate Directors.
Ms. Sulzberger received her B.A. from the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University. She received her M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and J.D. from Harvard Law School and is a member of the Massachusetts Bar.
Shlomo Benartzi is a behavioral economist interested in combining the insights of psychology and economics to solve big societal problems. He is a professor and co-founder of the Behavioral Decision-Making Group at UCLA Anderson School of Management.
Along with Richard Thaler of the University of Chicago, Benartzi pioneered the Save More Tomorrow™ (SMarT) program, a behavioral prescription designed to help employees increase their savings rates gradually over time. SMarT increased employee savings rates from 3.5 percent to 13.6 percent. The SMarT program is now offered by more than half of the large retirement plans in the U.S. and a growing number of plans in Australia and the U.K. The program has also been incorporated into the Pension Protection Act of 2006, helping millions of Americans boost their retirement savings.
Benartzi has supplemented his academic research with policy work and practical experience. He has advised government agencies in the U.S. and abroad, and has helped craft numerous legislative efforts. He currently serves as chief scientist for the California Digital Nudge Initiative. He has also worked with many financial institutions, served on multiple advisory boards and serves as a senior academic advisor for the VOYA Institute for Behavioral Finance Innovation.
Shlomo received his Ph.D. from Cornell University Johnson Graduate School of Management.
Dana Settle is a Founding Partner with Greycroft, and she heads the firm’s west coast office out of Los Angeles.
Prior to co-founding Greycroft, Dana spent several years as a venture capitalist and advisor to startup companies in the Bay Area, including six years at Mayfield, where she focused on early stage companies in the mobile communications and consumer Internet markets.
Dana currently manages Greycroft’s investments in Anine Bing, AppAnnie, Bird, Clique, EBTH.com, Steelhouse, TheRealReal, Thrive Market, Voicera, and WideOrbit. She also managed the firm’s investments in Maker Studios (sold to Disney), Viddy (sold to FullScreen), AwesomenessTV (sold to Dreamworks), Digisynd (sold to Disney), ContentNext (sold to Guardian Media), MoVoxx (sold to Motricity), Pulse (sold to LinkedIn), Sometrics (sold to American Express) and Trunk Club (sold to Nordstrom).
Dana also serves as a Board of Director to IMAX Corporation. Her additional experience includes business development at Truveo (AOL), investment banking at Lehman Brothers and international business development at McCaw Cellular Communications (AT&T).
Dana holds a BA in Finance and International Studies from the University of Washington and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Brent Callinicos was most recently the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Virgin Hyperloop. Prior to this, he served as Chief Financial Officer of Uber Technologies Inc. (NYSE: UBER) from September 2013 until March 2015, and remained an advisor to the company until September 2016. Prior to Uber, Callinicos served as Vice President, Treasurer, and Chief Accountant at Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) from 2007-2013, where he was also responsible for Tax, Internal Audit, and M&A Finance. He also ran Google’s Green Energy investing and Google Financial Services. From 1992-2007 Callinicos served in a variety of increasingly senior roles at Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), where he was most recently Corporate Vice President and Divisional CFO for Microsoft’s Platforms and Services Division. He also ran Worldwide Licensing and Pricing and Microsoft Financing, and he was Microsoft’s Treasurer from 2000-2004. Callinicos is a CPA and is currently on the Board of PVH (NYSE: PVH), Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU) and Rubicon (NYSE: RBT) and he is on the Board of Advisors at UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, where he received his MBA.
After four decades in financial services, Christopher Jones is lending his expertise as an investor and advisor. Previously, he was Co Head of Active Equities at Blackrock, which included its Fundamental and Scientific Equity Divisions, CIO of Fundamental Equities in the Americas, and co-head of Global Fundamental Equities.
Chris spent 32 years at JPMorgan Investment Management, starting as a research analyst, then graduating to project manager and team leader before becoming CIO of Growth and Small Cap Equities, and finally co head of US Equities.
Chris holds an M.A. in History from Cambridge University and is a member of both the New York Society of Security Analysts and The CFA Institute. He is a CFA charterholder.
Source: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/acorns-hires-christopher-jones-former-co-head-of-global-active-equities-at-blackrock-to-chair-investment-committee-300460553.html https://www.linkedin.com/in/christopher-jones-8054493b
Richard H. Thaler is the 2017 recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his contributions to behavioral economics. Thaler studies behavioral economics and finance as well as the psychology of decision-making. He investigates the implications of relaxing the standard economic assumption that everyone in the economy is rational and selfish, instead entertaining the possibility that some of the agents in the economy are sometimes human. Thaler is the director of the Center for Decision Research, and is the co-director (with Robert Shiller) of the Behavioral Economics Project at the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Thaler is the co-author (with Cass R. Sunstein) of the global bestseller Nudge (2008), in which the concepts of behavioral economics are used to tackle many of society’s major problems. In 2015 he published Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics. He has authored or edited four other books: Quasi-Rational Economics, The Winner's Curse: Paradoxes and Anomalies of Economic Life, and Advances in Behavioral Finance (editor) Volumes I and II, and has published numerous articles in prominent journals such as the American Economics Review, the Journal of Finance and the Journal of Political Economy.
Thaler is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Fellow of the American Finance Association and the Econometrics Society, and in 2015 served as the President of the American Economic Association. Before joining the University of Chicago faculty in 1995, Thaler taught at the University of Rochester and Cornell as well as visiting stints at The University of British Columbia, the Sloan School of Management at MIT, the Russell Sage Foundation and the Center for Advanced Study in Behavioral Sciences at Stanford.
Originally from New Jersey, Thaler attended Case Western Reserve University where he received a bachelor's degree in 1967. Soon after, he attended the University of Rochester where he received a master's degree in 1970 and a PhD in 1974. He joined the Chicago Booth faculty in 1995.
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