Kristal.AI has acquired Globalise, a global investment platform that provides Indian investors with access to US stocks, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and ETF baskets.
“It was a cash and stock swap deal and Kristal.AI has acquired a full stake in Globalise,” Asheesh Chanda, Founder and CEO of Kristal.AI, mentioned without disclosing the acquisition cost.
Kristal.AI founded by Chanda and Vineeth Narasimhan works with a wide range of customers. According to the startup, this includes sophisticated funds and family offices as well as mass affluent clients who do not receive the service they should from private banks.
Since its inception in 2016, Kristal.AI has raised a total of $15.4 million in funding from Chiratae Ventures, Desai Family Office, and others. “We are currently raising a Series B funding round,” he explained.
“Our client base is individuals with more than INR 5 Cr in financial net worth. In India, we have offices in the top three metros and are now expanding to Ahmedabad, Kolkata, and Hyderabad. Our product is distributed through financial advisors, wealth managers, family offices, and banks,” Chanda said.
For the affluent and high-net-worth individual (HNI) segment, Kristal.AI focuses on institutional products such as pre-IPO deals, hedge funds, and venture capital funds, whereas Globalise offers stock and ETF investment with no minimum requirements for the affluent and retail segments.
The artificial intelligence (AI) startup has $400 million through assets under management (AUM), and its user base has grown 7X to over 30,000 in the calendar year 2021. Kristal. AI provides institutional and accredited investors with access to premium products and advisory services in over 20 countries.
Kristal.AI said in a statement that the strategic acquisition of Globalise will allow retail investors to invest in global products through fractional investments.
“Kristal.AI enjoys a leading position in the global investment space and is a preferred choice for the affluent segment. Globalise’s acquisition is complementary as it will help us offer stock and ETF investing with no minimum requirement for the affluent and retail segments. The acquisition will help us penetrate the retail segment and deliver on our mission to bring access to the best-in-class products and advisory within the reach of everyone,” said Chanda.
Kristal.AI will receive support from Globalize’s avenues for fractional ownership of stocks, ETFs, and stock baskets in democratizing private wealth management. Kristal.AI can better cater to this large segment of DIY investors and assist with asset allocation and wealth planning, as per the statement.
According to the companies, Globalize’s customers and partners will not see any price or product changes. Furthermore, Globalise’s entire operating team has been retained and will continue to operate from their respective locations.
Kristal.AI competes with startups such as Scripbox, Funds India, Piggy, Groww, ORO Wealth, and Fisdom. There has recently been a lot of interest and activity in the wealth management startup space.
Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, joined Bengaluru-based wealth management startup Groww as an investor and advisor in January 2022. The development came just two months after Groww more than doubled its valuation to $3 billion after raising $251 million.
Fisdom, another startup in the space, announced a partnership with the Bank of Maharashtra in February 2022 to provide wealth management products and services to the bank’s over 29 million customers.
Moreover, Fisdom would distribute wealth products and services through the bank’s network of over 2,000 branches and digital platforms, which include a mobile banking app and internet banking.