How does Motif make money?

Steven Loeb · October 10, 2016 · Short URL:

Motif makes its money from each motif that is bought or sold, and its new subscription service

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Motif is a company that was built on the idea of giving investors the largest possible exposure to all aspects of the market, allowing them to make better, more informed investments.

The company calls itself "a concept-driven trading platform," one that that allows its users to act on their investing desires. It also adjusts to each user's individual financial goals, time horizons, risk profiles, investing interests and personal values, its tools allowing them to customize their portfolios by adding or deleting stocks or changing their weightings.

A motif is a basket of up to 30 stocks or ETFs, weighted to reflect an investment theme, market insight or innovative trend.

"We make it easy to act on these concepts by turning them into motifs—intelligently weighted baskets of up to 30 stocks or exchange-traded funds," the company says.

"No matter if you’re an experienced investor looking for a simple, cost-effective platform to build portfolios or a newbie looking for an investment that reflects your interests and passions, Motif Investing provides you with a platform and tools to achieve your unique investing goals."

The company makes its money based on commission.

When a users buy or sells a motif, makes additional buys of the entire motif they own, or rebalances their positions in a motif, it costs $9.95 per motif. 

There's a minimum investment amount of $250 for these buy/sell orders unless they're placing a “Sell All” order to sell the entire motif they own.

If the user buys or sells individual stocks/ETFs in motifs they own, or within those motifs, it costs $4.95 per stock/ETF. Its the same price to buy or sell individual stocks/ETFs outside of motifs they own. 

In addition, Motif also offers a subscription service, called Motif Blue, which it launched in September. It offers automated investing, automated rebalancing, market commentary, real-time quotes, and commission-free trades for a fixed monthly fee.

There are three plans to choose from:

  • BLUE Starter, which costs $4.95 a month, and allows the users to auto-invest in one motif, and to auto-rebalance one motif

  • BLUE Standard, which costs $9.95 a month, and allows the users to auto-invest in three motifs, and to auto-rebalance any professional motif. It also comes with Motif Capital exclusive market insights and commentary, as well as commission-free trades, with one motif or stock trade per month.

  • BLUE Unlimited, which costs $19.95 a month, and allows the users to auto-invest in three motifs, and to auto-rebalance any professional motif. It also comes with all stock quotes in real-time, on all pages, not just trade pages, as well as unlimited next market open trades and commission free.

Founded in June of 2010, Motif has over 150 professionally built motifs, over 9,100 published community created motifs, and over 180,000 that were built or customized by its community.

The company has raised $126.5 million in venture funding from Balderton Capital, Foundation Capital, Goldman Sachs, Ignition Partners, JP Morgan Chase & Co., Norwest Venture Partner, Renren Inc and Wicklow Capital.

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Hardeep Walia

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Hardeep is co-founder/CEO of Motif Investing. Previously he spent over six years at Microsoft, where he started as Director of Corporate Development, later GM of Worldwide Enterprise Services.