Jeff and Walter Cruttenden founded Acorns to simplify investing for the millions that have trouble getting started or continuing to invest.
Jeff noticed that most of his college classmates had an interest in investing yet couldn't come up with a lump sum. Those students that managed to put together a few hundred dollars were usually discouraged by expensive commissions. Finally, those remaining that were willing to pay the commissions were left to select an investment from thousands of stocks, bonds, and ETFs.
Acorns allows anybody to invest small amounts of money, frequently, without commissions or minimum balances. People can sign up on their smartphone in minutes, round up and invest the change from credit or debit card purchases, invest on the fly, and track their investments in real time. Further, Acorns has teamed up with Nobel Laureate, Dr. Harry Markowitz, to construct optimized portfolios for its clients.
Walter Cruttenden founded and led E*Offering, the first fully integrated online investment banking firm focusing on streamlining and reducing the cost of the equity underwriting process. E*Offering partners included E*Trade and Sandy Robertson of Robertson Stephens. In its first year, E*Offering participated in over 50 IPOs.
Within 18 months of inception, E*Offering was acquired for $328,000,000 by Wit Capital.
Walter Cruttenden co-founded SRS Laboratories after buying the nascent acoustic technology from Hughes Aircraft, and developing it into an independent company focused on sound solutions.
SRS Labs is known for providing surround-sound technology through hundreds of millions of devices. SRS Labs was acquired by DTS, Inc. in 2012.
Walter Cruttenden's first venture was founding Capital Data Bank, the computerized system to match private companies with private investors. As CEO, Walter grew CDB into Cruttenden Roth (now Roth Capital Partners), which became the largest investment bank in the nation financing micro-cap companies before he sold his stake to Fidelity.
Chris recognized the increasing demand for Web-based enrollment, distribution and tracking platforms in the financial services industry and responded by Co-Founding NetChemistry in 2000. Under Chris’s direction, NetChemistry quickly landed multiple global investment banks as clients and became recognized as the leader in the online offering space. To date NetChemistry’s software applications have raised billions of dollars in private equity financing.
In 2004, Chris guided NetChemistry into the Health Care Sector by working with Orange County’s Safety Net program to create AuthMed, an electronic enrollment and eligibility determination system. Shortly thereafter, he followed up the success of AuthMed with the introduction of “The Four Pillars of Health Technology Suite” consisting of Enrollment, Tracking, Management and Referrals. To date NetChemistry’s suite of applications have received multiple awards for their innovative achievement in improving access to care as well as saved millions for County Health Care Agencies.
When he is not engaged in banking and technology, Walter serves as the Director of the Binary Research Institute in Newport Beach, California, where he researches the cause and consequences of solar system motion.