For wealth management firms, robo advisers have become their own form of Pokémon: they gotta catch them all.

In just the past year, more than 16 firms have invested in existing digital advice companies or launched their own robo-style investing services. While it may seem like the current round of robo advice and financial planning tool acquisitions are an example of following the latest hot trend, there may just be a method to the madness.

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