NASHVILLE, Tenn., March 06, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Alto, a technology platform that makes it simple for investors to add alternative assets to their IRAs, today announced that it raised a $2.8 million seed round to expand its offering and integrate additional investment platform partners. This brings Alto’s total funding raised to $3.8 million. Investors include Jake Gibson, co-founder of NerdWallet, Foundation Capital, Sequoia’s Scout Fund, Amplify.LA, and First Check and Green D Funds.

The Alternative IRA™ from Alto (AltoIRA) is an individual retirement account that gives investors the freedom to invest in alternative assets like startups, private companies, real estate, loans, and digital currencies, either directly or through one of Alto’s investment platform partners, like AngelList.

According to the Investment Company Institute (ICI), Americans have more than $28 trillion of assets in retirement accounts including $9 trillion in IRAs. And, while it has always been allowed to invest in alternatives with an IRA, only about one percent of IRA assets are invested that way.

The reasons that more investors should consider alternatives in their IRAs are clear:

  • The rise of index-based investing has made it difficult to achieve above-market returns.
  • Decades of experience and market analysis demonstrate the value of adding sources of non-correlated returns to portfolios.
  • Many fast-growth companies which would typically move to the public markets are remaining private longer due to a surplus of private capital.
  • The potential for significant returns in alternatives are further enhanced by the tax advantages of IRAs, particularly Roth IRAs in which returns are not taxed at all.
  • By definition, IRAs are long-term investment accounts, and this fits the liquidity characteristics of most alternatives, such as startups, real estate, and lending.

“The vast majority of investors have no idea they can use their retirement savings to invest in alternative assets, like startups and real estate, while maintaining the tax advantage of IRAs,” said Eric Satz, CEO of Alto. “And even when they do know they can invest in alternatives, they choose not to due to the confusing process and arduous amounts of paperwork.”

“Alto’s platform simplifies and streamlines investing in alternative assets for both investors and issuers, making portfolio diversification available to anyone with a retirement savings account.”

Investors have the option of using their AltoIRA to invest in opportunities they have found on their own, or deals sourced by Alto’s investment platform partners, such as AngelList, Carofin, Groundfloor, Republic, Silicon Prairie, Wefunder, and YieldStreet.

Prior to founding Alto, Mr. Satz co-founded Currenex, an online global foreign currency exchange company serving banks, hedge funds, and other active traders. In 2007, Currenex sold to State Street Corp. for $564 million.

About Alto
Alto gives individual investors the ability to access and execute investments in alternative assets, such as private companies, real estate, and marketplace loans, using their retirement savings. The firm’s cost-effective and hassle-free platform streamlines the process for companies, funds, borrowers, and investment platform partners to include IRA investors in their offerings. Alto’s current investment partners include: AngelList, Carofin, Groundfloor, Republic, Silicon Prairie, Wefunder, and YieldStreet. Launched in 2018, the Nashville-based firm provides investors with an opportunity to achieve true asset diversification in their portfolios while maintaining tax advantages in their retirement savings. For more information, please visit www.altoira.com or follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.


Josh Inglis, josh@propllr.com, 312.504.7677