Clayton Gardner is the co-founder and co-CEO of Titan, an investment management company with a focus on financial products including real estate, cryptocurrency, and pre-IPO companies. Gardner’s commitment to diversity and inclusion in the tech industry began when he was just starting out his career.
This led him to start Titan, which has now grown into a national company with over $70M in total funding and over two hundred employees. Gardner’s journey to becoming a leader in the fight for diversity and inclusion in the tech industry is impressive. From his early days in the field to his work with Titan today, Clayton Gardner is clearly impressive in his goals for a more equitable future for all.
Early life and schooling
Clayton got his first stock at the age of 12. From there it seemed his career path was set.
”There’s no question, millennials are digital natives. In terms of financial literacy, I completely agree that there is massive room for improvement. I would characterize most millennials as not being well-served financially as they should have been. I can speak for myself. No one taught me to do taxes when I was in high school. No one taught me how to manage my investments.” Financial Planning
Clayton’s education led him to graduate Summa Cum Laude from the University of Pennsylvania and The Wharton School. At Wharton, he received a Bachelor of Science in Economics with concentrations in Finance and Statistics. Clayton al received a Bachelor of Applied Science from the University of Pennsylvania in Computer Science with a Minor in Mathematics.
He started as a summer analyst working at Goldman Sachs and later worked at Cerebrus Capital Management and Farallon as an analyst. Before co-founding Titan in 2017, Clayton worked for a year with a fundamental long/short equity hedge fund.
Prior to Titan, Clayton served on the investment teams of hedge funds like Farallon Capital Management and Goldman Sachs Investment Partners as well as private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management. Clayton is also an active angel investor in technology startups.
”There’s plenty of passive roboadvisors in the world. The world doesn’t need any more low-cost, automatic rebalancing index funds with tax-loss harvesting. I think that’s a commodity, it is free on many platforms, and will trend toward zero fees over time. What I think the world does need is more democratization of investing in more alternative and novel active ways and that’s our bread and butter” medium.com
Clayton Gardner’s Titan
Titan is an investment management platform which opens investing in elite financial products to a wider audience. It makes new types of financial products available to the public using the Titan mobile app.
”We’re built essentially like a robo advisor. We actually do trades on behalf of our clients. We hold their assets at a third-party custodian. And we use a mobile app to communicate and engage. So the cost structure is quite lean and our revenue model is very simple. We charge a 1% fee. Our 1% is a wrap fee. So that’s an all-in wrap fee.”
There’s an excellent interview from ARK Investment Management LLC with Clayton Gardner and Joe Percoco the co-founders of Titan. The podcast is available here and discusses personalizing private wealth and how the company was founded.
In this video, Clay discusses his vision for the future of Titan as it hits the next wave of growth with crypto offerings and alternative investments. He also shares why being recognized by Crunchbase as one of the Top 30 Companies Founded by Black and Latinx Entrepreneurs That Raised the Most Funding in 2021, was so important to him and Co-Founders Joe Percoco and Max Bernardy.
Leadership roles & awards
Titan was named Forbes’ to the Next Billion-Dollar Startups of 2021 list. Additionally, Clayton and the Titan Team were recognized by Crunchbase as one of the Top 30 Companies Founded by Black founder and Latinx Entrepreneurs That Raised The Most Funding in 2021. Clayton Gardner is also an alum of the Jerome Fisher Program in Management & Technology at the Wharton School.
Clayton Gardner’s story goes from an early love of finance to the creation of a company that opens the world to a greater chance of wealth creation and management. Entrepreneur Clayton Gardners’s desire to share his experience and knowledge of finance with others to strengthen their portfolios has earned him this recognition in our Black Excellence biographies and profiles series.
Clayton Gardner is part of our Black Founders50 Series. Download the complete 2023 BBVA Founders50 list here.