Strategos/wRatings Innovation Index Identifies the Most Innovative Financial Services Companies

Innovaro, Inc. (NYSE Amex: INV), a comprehensive end-to-end innovation solution provider, and The wRatings Corporation, an independent stock research firm, today announced the results of their quarterly Strategos/wRatings Innovation Index, with the focus of this issue on the financial services industry. The study was conducted as a collaborative effort between Strategos, the strategic services division of Innovaro, and The wRatings Corporation.

While the financial services industry’s drive for innovation has largely been blamed for the financial crisis of the last couple of years, the industry’s customers are giving them little credit for innovating in meaningful ways for them. So, while this quarter’s analysis found that customers saw financial products as highly useful they are not “cool”, nor desirable. Customers ranked the financial services industry (average of the top 10 is 45.7 out of the possible 100) at roughly half the rankings given to the food & beverage (75.9) and consumer electronic (84.0)1 industries.

“Consumers are asking financial services firms to deliver innovative products that make their lives simpler and easier,” explains Gary A. Williams, CEO and Founder of wRatings. “Unfortunately, what they get are descriptions of complex products that alienate, bewilder and upset them to the point where they just want them to go away. And that makes it tough to re-ignite the economy.”

While the innovation performance of the overall financial services industry is low, the companies in the Top 20 of this quarter’s analysis have bucked the trend. Over the years, they mainstreamed innovative concepts and products, including automated bill payment, self-service brokerage, mutual fund supermarkets, niche-segment affinity cards, policies to address previously unprotected risks (e.g., longevity), equitable pricing models for car insurance (e.g., based on miles driven, first accident forgiveness), and exchange-traded funds. Cumulatively, they have created ever-wider and more convenient ways to access and use our money.

“After the financial crisis, financial services firms are striving to regain customer trust while reacting to new regulations. At the same time, many consumers need help in healing their financial well-being,” states Peter Skarzynski, Senior Managing Director of Strategos and co-author of Innovation to the Core (HBSP, 2008). “The current time, perhaps, represents the perfect storm for innovators to reshape the industry with creative products or services and fundamentally different business models that consider the customer as priority.”

57 companies were included in this edition of the Strategos/wRatings Innovation Index. All companies received an Innovation Index rating, with 100 equaling the most innovative.

Rank Company Ticker Strategos/wRatingsInnovation Index 1 Metlife Inc. NYSE:MET 49.24 2 People’s United Financial Inc NASDAQ:PBCT 48.59 3 Bank of New York Mellon Corp (The) NYSE: BK 46.75 4 Aon Corp. NYSE: AON 46.20 5 Travelers Companies Inc (The) NYSE: TRV 44.96 6 CME Group Inc NYSE: CME 44.29 7 Progressive Corp (The) NYSE: PGR 44.22 8 Capital One Financial Corp. NYSE: COF 44.18 9 Schwab (Charles) Corp NASDAQ:SCHW 44.10 10 Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc. NYSE: MMC 44.07 11 Hudson City Bancorp Inc NASDAQ:HCBK 43.83 12 Everest Re Group Ltd NYSE: RE 43.80 13 Allstate Corp (The) NYSE: ALL 43.76 14 Visa Inc NYSE: V 42.74 15 ACE Ltd NYSE: ACE 42.52 16 BB&T Corp NYSE: BBT 42.44 17 Chubb Corp (The) NYSE: CB 42.03 18 Blackrock Inc NYSE: BLK 41.89 19 New York Community Bancorp Inc. NYSE: NYB 41.89 20 Northern Trust Corp NASDAQ:NTRS 41.84 ——————————————————————————-

The report and full details of the methodology is available at www.strategos.com, www.wratings.com, and www.innovaro.com. Detailed ranking and score data are available to wRatings subscribers.

About Innovaro, Inc.

Innovaro, Inc. is a comprehensive end-to-end innovation solution provider. With fully scalable solutions, whether for a global 1000 company or small R&D lab or university scientist, we help our clients create breakthrough innovation, realize latent value in their IP and accelerate their innovations to market. Leading companies trust us to create profitable growth, new revenue streams, enduring capabilities and lasting value through innovation. For more information about Innovaro, please visit its website at www.innovaro.com.

About wRatings Corporation

The wRatings Corporation is an independent stock research firm based in metro Washington DC. The company was founded by Harvard Business Review author and research expert, Gary A. Williams. He and his team continually study consumer and executive buying behavior to project the future earnings performance of companies. Since 1999, their original set of leading indicators helps investors, corporations and consultants improve their performance by using a common framework to measure the competitive strength of companies. For more information about wRatings, please visit its website at www.wRatings.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain matters discussed in this press release are “forward-looking statements.” These forward-looking statements can generally be identified as such because the context of the statement will include words such as Innovaro “expects,” “should,” “believes,” “anticipates” or words of similar import. Certain factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in these forward-looking statements and these factors are identified from time to time in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

1 Pharmaceutical/medical device and food/beverage industries were analyzed in the first and second quarter of 2010. Consumer Electronics industry was analyzed in Q3 of 2009.