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Personal Capital to expand advisor force with $40M boost

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In a sign of how competitive the hybrid advice space has become, Personal Capital announced it added millions more for its operations on Tuesday and will use the new funding to expand its advisor base in multiple cities across the U.S.

The Silicon Valley-based hybrid advisor announced it received an additional $40 million from its wealthy patron IGM Financial, which is part of Montreal-based Power Corporation of Canada.

IGM committed $75 million to Personal Capital last May as in its Series E fundraising round. The new funding is an extension of that commitment, the firm said in a statement.

Personal Capital stated it now has $4.9 billion in AUM, with $1.4 billion gained this year alone, and saw average accounts climb from $340,000 to over $380,000 in the same period.

The firm noted that its Private Client Service tier, which serves investors with more than $1 million, represents roughly 40% of its AUM.

The funding has been crucial to turning around Personal Capital's fortunes, as it tries keeping pace with industry competition, from incumbents that adapted its own model to digital-first startups that now offer hybrid advice too.

Vanguard's Personal Advisor Services, for instance, has over $80 billion in assets, and has been on a CFP hiring spree to bolster staff at its call centers serving its hybrid advice service.

In addition to spending on marketing and product development, Personal Capital stated it will be hiring advisors in Dallas, Atlanta, New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, while expanding its San Francisco and Denver offices.

Personal Capital's new funding also brought changes within: Jeff Carney, CEO of IGM Financial, joined its board of directors during the first announcement, and then in April, founder Bill Harris stepped aside for Jay Shah to become its new CEO. Harris remains as board chair.

"The support and participation from existing investors and IGM/Power Financial has been critical to helping us fulfill our mission of creating better financial lives through technology and people," Shah said in a statement.

Personal Capital's new funding announcement comes two weeks after rival Betterment received an additional $70 million in funding and a new valuation of $800 million.

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