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iBillionaire: The Latin American App that Turns Investors into Millionaires

iBillionaire: The Latin American App that Turns Investors into Millionaires

Posted by Clarisa Herrera on February 08, 2015

According to the creators of iBillionaire, becoming a millionaire has less to do with luck and more with closely following other investors’ success formula, such multimillionaires as Warren Buffett, George Soros, Carl Icahn, Daniel Loeb and many others.

Keeping that idea in mind, Argentinean Alejandro Estrada (founder of DineroMail) and Ecuadorian Raul Moreno launched in 2013 an application that monitors the investing activity of those multimillionaires: In which companies do they invest and what risks do they take? That was the information they were looking for.

“Investing banks monitor the finest practices of the main investors and there are many analysts that privately do it. Likewise, this information is shown in some websites, the problem is that average investors – our target market – find it hard to understand and, besides, it was not available for cell phones. This information is public, but not everybody has the time to analyze these portfolios. Our mission aims at making this information more easily comprehensible and democratic, thus helping people be better investors” Moreno explains.

Even Moreno, who is a finances specialist and investors, used to think that making the right investing decisions was a complex process. “When I was buying stocks from companies I usually asked myself how bad or good I was as an investor. What’s left for people that don’t have the knowledge and want to invest? That was when we decided to use the information of those who do know, so other people could make better decisions” he points out.

50 percent of iBillionaire users live in the United States, the utmost market, followed by Canada.

A higher challenge was put on the map in August 2014 and, with it, the milestone that only a few startups can achieve: quoting on New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

 “American investors are the most “sophisticated and massive” in the world, most of them have an investment account, as it’s very easy to acquire one and that’s not common in other countries. Anyway, thanks to technology and the app, 10 per cent of the users live in Latin America and 40 per cent is spread in Europe and Asia, with growing numbers. The growth is faster out of the US, step by step, finances go global” he underscores.
 
The next step was putting out iBillionaire Index, an index made up of 30 stocks of American companies that receive investments from 10 major Wall Street multimillionaires and promises profitability higher than 5 per cent. With this goal, iBillionaire takes public information from the United States’ Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). In this respect, Moreno highlights that every time you check the index, “it's like if you gather with a group of multimillionaires and ask them to reach a consensus on the best bets on the S&P 500.”
 
The index makes investors’ life easier; thanks to this tool –without buying a significant amount of stocks – it’s possible to have a diversified investment portfolio without the cost of time and energy that would entail analyzing different portfolios.

“We realized that it’s is not only about giving pieces of information, since at the end of the day that information was used to make investment decisions. We needed to create an investment product so as to control the experience” Moreno says.

So they launched an investment fund or ETF (Exchange Traded Fund) in collaboration with American bank Direxion Investments

“We joined Direxion Investments. They created the fund, put it on the map and have the permit. Since we are a startup with limited capital and staff, we decided to go into partnership with a fund-managing experienced bank. In financial terms, ETF was the financial vehicle we found more democratizer and easy to access” he details.

The share presently costs USD 25, so the barrier is very low. “In record time we went from mobile app to quoting on NYSE. At company level, launching an ETF entails being regulated by the commission of values and having an IPO, but it’s very simple for users” Moreno explains.

iBillionaire currently has over 200 thousand downloads around the world and it has been barely advertised. On the other hand, the investment fund already counts 38 million assets, a significant number for a new company.

Nowadays, news products have been put out and expansion is the aim.

“We launched the IBD index that looks for shares that pay more dividends for those who want safer income flow. This index pays 5.5 per cent a year and you have the possibility to win or lose depending on the Stock Market, but you are paid 5.5 per cent a year, that’s for sure. We are looking forward to offering new services going global. We are closing a deal in Thailand and the fund is soon going to be available on stock markets of Canada and Mexico” Moreno affirms.

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