Back in 2012 Bryan Stockwell and Kory Masing had an idea. They’d found a strategy called value investing, and its concepts immediately made sense to them. Applying it, Bryan was able to make some key decisions about his own 401k that quickly far outperformed its prior growth and returns.
For Bryan, those kinds of results were like a drug and he was hooked. He’d found something that gave total control over his retirement, and made massive returns, compared to the paltry performance of his fund-driven 401k. He and Kory both were struck by the consistency of the results, and how easy it was to find good companies, once they understood the research.
With something so powerful available to everyone, they wondered why weren’t more individual investors weren’t using it. Quickly they realized it came down to the research. Many people had the passion, but few had the time to analyze and scrutinize deep pockets of data to bring it all together.
Both being developers though, Kory and Bryan felt confident they could find a way to get the computer to do the tedious work and bring this amazing concept to more people. So they set out to write an algorithm to analyze metrics like debt or past profits, quantify it, then create a score, allowing one to discern at a glance what otherwise might take weeks to interpret.
The first real snag they hit would also be one that forced them to put the project aside for almost a decade; the data. Diving in and finding all the required information for one company wasn’t a problem. But if their idea to simplify the research and empower investors to “ditch” their mutual funds in lieu of better investment opportunities was going to work, they needed information on ALL the companies.
At the time, it was going to cost them around $10,000 a month to do that. Again, being developers not millionaires, neither of them had that kind of cash and were forced to put the project on the back burner. But Bryan never really put it away. He kept playing with it, got even better at it, and never let go of the idea of using an algorithm to quantify things.
Then in 2020 something besides COVID happened. He found a way to get the data – ALL the data, at a fraction of the cost. Re-inspired, he started working again. He brought in a team to develop the website and help with the code. He hired an old friend to consult on design and a professional to make a video, leaving his wife and best friend to do everything else.
Together then, DYF Investing became our obsession (and a decent way to spend the quarantine), devoting every free minute in 2020 to working on it. And we are so close now!
Even though Bryan did find a way to get affordable data, it’s still crazy expensive to get a startup off the ground. Which brings us to the present. At the time of this writing, we are on the eve of launching our Indiegogo campaign to secure enough capital to see the project through.
Once we’re done and the website is live we believe it’s going to change the way people invest. And if we make a few mutual fund managers nervous along the way, so be it. We believe change is good, especially when it works in favor of the little guy, instead of the “establishment.” It has long been Bryan’s vision to empower the average person. To proivde a means to retirement wealth, real wealth, without handing a third of it over to a fund manager or waste it in fees.
Ditch Your Fund embodies the idea that we can take charge of our own future. That we are intelligent enough to do better for ourselves, and we are confident enough to manage our own money. We can do this. You can do this. Let’s do this together.