Brooke’s Note: When you are Pershing, you want to show established advisors that you are staying true to your values as a virtual vault with steel walls as thick as those of a 12th century dungeon. But you also have to show you can dance digitally like a child of Google. To see all that done in one place, awkwardly at times, with the mantra 'digital’ used as a higher-brow version of 'robo,’ you needed to be in Orlando last week, according to some who made the pilgrimage. Whether Pershing can pull off such grand designs of being old and new in one corporate body remains to be seen. But it seems clear that it’s operating on a 20-ounce caffeinated beverage with four teaspoons of sugar as it plays catch-up.
Self-described “industrial-strength” technology companies have been slow to join the robo-fracas.
But at the Pershing INSITE conference last week, Pershing and IBM came out of the digital closet together adopting a confessional tone that mixed the old with the new.
“We are a billion-dollar startup inside a $100 billion, 100 year-old firm, and we see a big opportunity ...