Ep. 146: Infusing Financial Portfolios with Healthcare Considerations with Christine Simone

This week on Bridging The Gap, Matt welcomes Christine Simone, CEO and Co-Founder at Caribou, a software to help financial advisors plan for their clients’ current and future healthcare costs. Listen as they discuss the often-overlooked intersection of healthcare and financial planning. 

As the founder of Caribou, Christine brings to light the crucial importance of incorporating healthcare costs into financial strategies, given that such expenses rank among the top outlays during retirement. Drawing on her diverse background spanning biology to business, Christine explains Caribou’s mission. The aim is to provide advisors with effective tools to tackle this gap, emphasizing proactive and iterative healthcare planning, in addition to addressing longstanding concerns such as tax and estate planning.

The conversation delves into the complexities of healthcare systems, where numerous stakeholders, from pharmacy benefit managers to insurance brokers, often create a labyrinthine environment for consumers and advisors alike. By highlighting examples like Mark Cuban’s drug company, which aims to cut out unnecessary intermediaries, Christine argues for greater transparency and consumer empowerment. She shares actionable advice for advisors, such as the critical need to reevaluate health plans during open enrollments and embrace technology that offers better-informed healthcare guidance.

Throughout the episode, Matt and Christine engage in a candid discussion about the entrepreneurial journey, challenging misconceptions about the nature of entrepreneurship. Christine’s journey, starting from unexpected beginnings and addressing a key issue in healthcare understanding, demonstrates the gradual process of creating a business that genuinely meets the needs of its customers. This episode sheds light on the multifaceted world of healthcare in financial planning, providing real value and practical solutions for advisors and their clients.

Timestamps From This Episode

[00:04:37] Christine reflects on her journey, moving from roles as a snowboard instructor and marine biologist, with an initial desire to pursue a career on the medical side, to where she is now.

[00:09:00] “Constant iteration is like the startup philosophy, right? If you’re constantly learning, you’re talking to potential users.”

[00:11:26] Christine sheds light on the disconnect she perceived between financial planning and healthcare.

[00:25:45] Christine discusses her insights into why advisors have historically overlooked healthcare planning and continue to do so.

[00:32:54] Christine explains how she supports advisors and clients in putting into action what they discuss in Caribou.

[00:39:07] “The reason why I believe I am a good leader to our team and a good manager to our team is because I know what our customers want. I know what their clients want.”

[00:46:33] Christine provides a piece of actionable advice that all advisors or podcast listeners can readily apply starting tomorrow.

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About the Show

Bridging the Gap is a financial podcast hosted by CEO Matt Reiner focused on bringing together leaders from the finance and the technology industries to focus on innovating the financial services industry.