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12 Best Equity Management Software of 2019

Category: B2B News
What is the best equity management software?
The best equity management software is Carta Equity, considering its ease-of-use and ability to make tasks like stock option compensation management, equity issuance and tracking and financial reporting much simpler. It can track both employee and non-employee equity while making quick work of valuations.

First time handing out employee stock options? Regardless if you’re new to the game or not, it is a fact that for large enterprises, stock options have become a preferred method of sharing profits with workers. It is a great way to reward employees and align worker and shareholder incentives at the same time. However, getting into this process could get a bit tricky. Complications from regulation compliance, offer letter, getting boards to approve grant options, getting into the option exercise itself and computing share values. These features make stock option management software a lot like fixed asset management software with the need to track value over a period of time, only that the goal is reversed in equity management: appreciation.

Likewise, you might be tempted to rely on financial reporting software to manage equities, but you will be shortchanging yourself. A good equity management software product should streamline and automate the complexities of the equity management process and more. The core features should include handling and tracking equity issuance processes, securing 409A valuations, ensuring compliance and managing capitalization tables. The tool should also be able to act as a central hub for activities relevant to equity, most of the time eliminating the need for legal professionals every time a company issues equity. Clearly, a financial reporting system or even any of the top accounting solutions won’t make the cut.

No worries, here, you will learn all about the 12 best equity management software with core capabilities. You’ll also find it easy to compare their unique selling points and corresponding benefits vis a vis each other so you can shortlist your best options.

equity management software

 

Stock options have immensely grown in popularity, helping companies reward employees and share business ownership with them. It is said that the number of workers holding stock options have increased by 900% since the late ’80s. However, despite the popularity of stock options as a form of equity compensation, stock appreciation rights, phantom stocks and restricted stocks have also become favorites. Lest you confuse equity with binary options, which is more suitable for anyone after quick returns, equity is all about long-term investment and management. The process is more complex, as seen in this diagram::

forestersassetmgmt.com

Employee stock options offer a lot of financial benefits to workers. For instance, a 2018 study by the National Center for Employee Ownership has revealed that stock-owning employees have a 33% higher median income from wages than those of non-stock owning employees. They also have higher median household net wealth. Job stability has also been found to be more substantial with the group, with median tenures averaging 5.2 years.

Aside from those mentioned, employee-owners receive salaries that are 2.2 times their worth in retirement and do not face the likelihood of being laid-off as most of their organizations are financially stable. The companies, for their part, do not only contribute to their employees’ financial standing but to the economy as a whole with many of them helping in job creation, generating 2.5% more per year.

1. Carta

Carta dashboard example

Perched on top of our 12 best equity management software list is Carta, a powerful solution that helps businesses in managing their equity, shares and option holders by making the process simpler. It comes with all the needed tools to help you handle request valuations, track investments, manage cap tables and equity incentive plans. This robust piece of software also helps you manage projects, documents, processes, and boards.

Carta is known for its ease-of-use, simplifying tasks such as equity issuance/tracking, financial reporting, stock option compensation expense management, and 409 valuations. Employee and non-employee equity tracking can also be done through the system’s equity plan administration feature while being able to move agent services. The equity management tools that come with the solution make quick work of valuations while keeping stakeholders in the know regarding their company stake.

The vendor offers a great free demo that allows you to see all key features of their software in action. You can easily sign up for Carta free demo here.

Investors also stand to benefit from using the software, which offers features like ASC 820, data security and fund accountant teams that are always on standby to cater to users’ concerns. Carta runs on any web browser and devices running on Android and iOS, making it accessible anytime, anywhere.

Why Chose Carta?

  1. Compliance management. Carta has a compliance management functionality that makes sure that all your equity complies with existing rules and regulations. It likewise keeps your reports, stakeholder contacts, documents, and Rule 701 worksheets, which can be exported to other systems.
  2. Robust support. The software updates equity issuance and all associated information. You are also able to track scheduled vesting and process electronic securities.
  3. Board clearance and approvals management. Board approvals can be handled directly through the app, which also safeguards document and board check retrievals. Pre-designed 409A templates also come with Carta, along with key board clearance documents.
  4. Certificates management. Certificates can be stored by the vendor for safekeeping, who makes use of a maximum security vault. Certificate custody can be managed by Carta, which likewise offers quarterly reporting support.

2. Solium Shareworks

Solium Shareworks dashboard example

Coming in next is Solium Shareworks, an equity management tool that is designed to help you manage restricted stock units and employee stock purchase plans. Such can be done across your company and even abroad, making the platform ideal for companies with global operations. Employees will benefit from the system as they are given a complete view of vesting schedules, stock value, and release option elections, among others.

The software brings to the table a variety of features needed to effectively manage your equity. These include employee protection during blackout periods, share selling and holding through automated release options. Default release elections can also be set up at vesting dates.

Why Choose Solium Shareworks?

  1. Suitable for mid-size and large enterprises. The app works for both medium and large businesses, including those who operate overseas.
  2. Blackout trading protection. Solium Shareworks protects shareholders during blackout dates by blocking trading in the system, making it a great tool for publicly-traded businesses.
  3. Ease-of-use. The system is highly-intuitive, making stock management a breeze. It also keeps users updated on share allocation.
  4. Powerful analytics. Built-in analytics help inform stockholders of the progress of their investments, including current options values and future options.

3. Gust Equity Management

Gust Equity Management dashboard example

Equity management software Gust Equity Management is designed to help companies manage their capitalization. It eliminates the burden of using spreadsheets in managing enterprise capitalization tables, along with tedious documentation. Using the solution, shareholders are able to audit option grants, equity issuances, forfeitures, vesting dates and board approvals, getting rid of the need for costly legal professionals.

The tools that come with the system are all you’ll ever need to manage your capitalization, resulting in huge cost-savings from legal fees. You can also make 409A valuation report requests, allowing you to offer option grants. This is very useful in preventing tax liabilities for both companies and their employees. A time-hop functionality, meanwhile, lets you see capitalization at any time.

Why Choose Gust Equity Management?

  1. All around capitalization management tool. The software helps companies deal with every funding stage by being able to manage option grants, forfeitures, equity issuances, and vesting dates, to name a few.
  2. Tax compliance. To avoid tax consequences, Gust Equity Management allows you to make requests for 409A valuation reports. This, in turn, enables you to offer option grants at fair prices.
  3. Round modeling. The platform’s round modeling feature gives you visibility into the impact of dilution on convertible notes and future equity financing rounds. Capitalization can also be viewed at any given time so that equity vesting can be tracked by employees on a whim.

4. Capshare

Capshare dashboard example

All-in-one cap table management platform Capshare is designed to aid companies, law graduates and investors in managing stocks, equity, dilution and ownership shares. The platform serves as a central hub from which users can manage and track equity while providing them with key stock information.

The system restricts access to relevant users, who are able to view stock information, helping them make intelligent decisions. The app has grown in popularity, with 10,000+ organizations relying on the system for their equity management needs.

Why Choose Capshare?

  1. Scalable system. The solution is designed to cater to any business requirement. It can be customized to suit your processes be they basic or complex.
  2. Shareholder management made easy. Aside from making shareholder management easy, Capshare also streamlines and personalizes them. You can manage your shareholders from virtually anywhere, along with compliance documents, certificates, equity and cap tables. You no longer have to contend with manual processes, saving you precious time.
  3. Impeccable support. A team of experts is constantly on standby to cater to resolve your concerns and inquiries. Agents have a vast knowledge of cap table management so that you can be assured that you get a speedy and accurate resolution of your issues.

5. Captable.io

Captable.io dashboard example

Captable.io is a free cap table management tool that helps you to easily come up with cap tables and scenario models. The software does this by guiding you every step of the way. It prompts you of key organization data that should be added to your cap table like stock option pool, employee grants, and convertible notes.

The platform also serves as an information repository where you can store all your data, keeping them confidential at all times. All cap tables created using the app can be shared easily to relevant parties, including investors, employees, and lawyers, who can quickly be given access to cap tables, effectively making document management a breeze.

Why Choose Captable.io?

  1. Round and exit modeling. The software can give you an idea of how a potential investment could impact share ownership in your company. It also forecasts note conversion and possible shareholder earnings.
  2. Data security. The system keeps your cap tables for you in a highly secure location. These can be shared with relevant users provided you grant them access to the documents.
  3. Cloud-based tool. Being a cloud-deployed solution, Captable.io can be accessed from virtually anywhere at any given time. This means that you can manage your equity even while away from the office.

6. Backstop

Backstop dashboard example

Cloud-deployed investment management software Backstop is specifically targeted at hedge funds, consultants, pensions, private equity and venture capital, institutions, and foundations. It has a myriad of features designed to improve the productivity of your investments. A number of tools come with the system, these include Portfolio Research, Portal and IR, Accounting and Backstop CRM. However, if you’re desperate to boost your sales, Top CRM tools would be a wise choice.

Using the platform you can monitor capital commitments, subscriptions, and distributions across your entire financial portfolio. It likewise helps you manage sales, relationships, and marketing. In addition, Backstop can integrate with Outlook, significantly improving communication.

Why Choose Backstop?

  1. It boosts investment productivity. The software’s ability to manage investor relations, accounting, portfolio research, and sales helps improve the productivity of your investments.
  2. Investment tracking. Backstop can track distributions, subscriptions and capital commitment across your entire portfolio.
  3. Accounting solution. The accounting tool that comes with the platform help you in managing your equity. The program does this through dashboards and by offering free calculations.

7. Certent Equity Management

Certent Equity Management dashboard example

Certent Equity Management is an application that helps businesses in complying with existing rules and regulations governing equity grants and awards. It comes with a fully-integrated accounting suite that helps users in computing expenses for each equity award. It makes equity management a whole lot easier by allowing users to quickly upload new grants to the system.

Certent Equity Management streamlines the whole equity management process, resulting in greater efficiency. It is quite easy to use so that users need not possess extensive technical knowledge. Working with the solution takes away the complexities of using spreadsheets, allowing you to work smarter and better.

Why Choose Certent Equity Management?

  1. Great customer support. A team of competent customer support agents is always on call to cater to your needs. These highly-knowledgeable individuals help users learn more about the system to help them maximize the benefits that it offers.
  2. Streamlined equity reporting. The tool streamlines all areas of equity reporting such as ASC 718. This allows for the minimization of risks, improved accuracy, along with risk reduction.
  3. Speeds up equity management. Time spent on ESPP program management is reduced. This is done by making eligibility enrollment and purchase requirements and streamlined communications and reporting.

8. GlobalShares

GlobalShares dashboard example

GlobalShares is an equity management tool that also functions as a payroll and compensation reporting software. It is an easy-to-use product that can handle all equity administration matters without having to undergo complex training. Also serving as a document storage service, the program keeps a record of all your information, securing them while giving you quick access to your data. However, for those who want robust payroll functionalities, popular payroll software may be the way to go.

GlobalShares comes with powerful features that ensure the efficient management of your equity. These include portfolio management, public and private equity management and a participant portal.

Why Choose GlobalShares

  1. Employee share ownership planning. The platform makes the process of worker share ownership administration a lot simpler while ensuring that your company remains compliant with existing rules.
  2. Competent equity professionals. You get to avail of the services of a highly-knowledgeable team of equity professionals, not to mention its support of multiple languages.
  3. Share dealing solution. Global Shares aids businesses in delivering employee shares on a global scale. It also allows you to deal shares from anywhere in the world in real-time.

9. Ledgy

Ledgy dashboard example

Ledgy is a robust investment management solution that houses a lot of features that will prove beneficial to your business. These include fund, portfolio and compliance management, performance metrics and benchmarking.

The vendor offers excellent live support while providing users with in person and live online training sessions. And because the software is deployed via cloud, it can be accessed from virtually anywhere at any given time. This works for investment managers who are always on the go. But perhaps, the best of the solution is the fact that it has a free version, perfect for businesses who are on a tight budget.

Why Chose Ledgy?

  1. Robust support. The service comes with excellent live support while offering online training and in-person sessions.
  2. Cloud-based solution. Ledgy harnesses the power of the cloud, allowing users to access the system anytime, anywhere.
  3. Free version. A free version of the software is available to those who need a powerful investment management platform without spending a fortune.

10. Capdesk

Capdesk dashboard example

Equity management software Capdesk is designed to help organizations streamline their equity plans while being able to make confidential compliance reports. What’s good about the tool is that it helps you save a lot of money on legal fees, by making sure that all equity records and documents are managed in compliance with best practices.

Capdesk helps users structure their share grants while making exercise and vesting accessible to them. This makes sure that all exercises and grants are accurately managed. Other key features include automated reporting, cap table management, automatic audit trails, and equity and document structuring.

Why Choose Capdesk?

  1. Equity access. Both companies and their employees can access their equity directly from the platform. This can be done anytime and in real-time.
  2. Employee equity management. Unlike manual methods, the system only requires you to provide a bit of information and it does the rest. Everything is automated so that you do not have to do the heavy lifting.
  3. Equity and document structuring. You do not have to structure your equity and documents on your own, which are tedious processes at the least. The software can do these for you in a way that complies with current best practices.
  4. Accurate information. Manual calculation is prone to errors. Because Capdesk automates everything, all information are accurately computed.

11. Truequity

Truequity dashboard example

Truequity is a powerful stock option management software that is designed to keep records of employee stock ownership. The solution offers users updated and accurate stock ownership information, providing them a better understanding of the impact of liquidation and future financing on their organizations. But the best part is the fact that the product is deployed via cloud, giving users easy access to the system.

As a stock option management platform, Truequity benefits users by tracking and modeling shares, calculating valuations, convertible notes, and share prices–all from a single dashboard. It likewise allows for the exercise, cancellation or acceleration of options. Its reporting feature, meantime, generates summary reports on option status.

Why Choose Truequity?

  1. Management of financing rounds. Truequity assists users in this area through share modeling and tracking. This is accomplished by computing holding percentages, conversions, and share prices.
  2. Recordkeeping. The software keeps a record of all your employee stock ownership, which can be easily accessed by relevant users. It is a highly-secure system that keeps your data safe, away from prying eyes.
  3. Scenario planning. The system pretty much does the math with its built-in models. Future rounds of financing can be modeled with option pool rise, valuations and liquidation preferences calculated by the software.
  4. eSignature and document management. Truequity also acts as a document management platform, allowing you to store and access your documents at any given time while supporting e-Signatures. It can also come up with notices of exercise and grant to both companies and employees.

12. OPTRACK

OPTRACK dashboard example

OPTRACK is a stock option management platform that helps companies manage equity compensation, stock data and stock options. It is a self-administration tool that you can use to manage equity plans, cap table and compliance reporting without breaking the bank. This is why it has become a popular tool for companies seeking a complete view of their equity awards and ownership. The solution does not discriminate as it works for both private and public companies. It also serves as a single source of truth about your equity by keeping accurate historical information about them.

Why Choose OPTRACK?

  1. Compliance made simple. Complying with equity rules becomes easier with the tool, which allows you to easily fulfill your financial reporting obligations under the law.
  2. Employee access. Employees stay informed with OPTRACK as it provides them with personalized views of their equity, along with comprehensive ownership reports.
  3. Pass audits. You can confidently undergo audits and satisfy those conducting them as all the figures displayed by the system are justifiable. This is made possible by the accurate computations rendered by the system.

How To Choose the Right Equity Management Software For You

Purchasing an equity management tool is not as easy as you think. There are a number of qualities that must be present in such software for a purchase to be the “right one.” The overall requirement, of course, is that it should meet best practices in four key areas–accuracy, security, efficiency, and comprehensiveness.

The right tool has to come up with accurate information, which can be derived from equally accurate calculations. Failure to satisfy this criterion could spell trouble for your company. Incorrect figures can not only adversely impact your employee-owners but give you compliance problems as well. Another thing to consider is security. Are your software’s security features enough to keep you confident that your information cannot be accessed by unknown parties? Also, a good solution will not only provide data security but accessibility as well.

And then there is the question of efficiency. Is a system known for being able to handle any aspect of equity management? It also should have the required automation features to make light work of tedious tasks. It wouldn’t hurt also if data in your equity management software can work with your HR software, where most of the employee data reside.

Lastly, the ideal system should be comprehensive, offering functionalities that are needed to ensure that managing your equity is as smooth as possible. These may include record keeping, share valuation, scheduling vesting dates and share pricing.

These are but some of the qualities of a good equity management system. Clinging to these ideas will help you in your hunt for the perfect platform.

And we’re just about finished here. Having read our list of the 12 best equity management software, you should be ready to shop for such a tool. Just keep in mind the things that you need in such a tool and you can’t go wrong. You can also go for free trials, to get a firsthand feel of a platform’s features. Better yet, consider our top tool, Carta Equity and begin enjoying its benefits.  Meanwhile, for small businesses looking to earn from stocks, it is best to learn the basics of investing before diving into a deal.

By Louie Andre

B2B & SaaS market analyst and senior writer for FinancesOnline. He is most interested in project management solutions, believing all businesses are a work in progress. No stranger to small business hiccups and drama, having been involved in a few internet startups. Prior to his for-profit ventures, he has had managed corporate communications for a Kansas City-based Children International unit.

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