In October 1989, Austin Pryor was having lunch with long-time friend Larry Burkett. As they discussed the financial challenges facing the average Christian family, Larry commented that a monthly newsletter was needed. Larry thought of it as "a kind of Consumer Reports for Christians in the area of finances."
Austin's initial response? "You're right. Too bad nobody's doing anything like that!"
1990 - SOUND MIND INVESTING MAILS FIRST ISSUE
Austin started publishing its flagship product, The Sound Mind Investing Newsletter, the following year. It's an easy-to-read color format, 16-page monthly issue loaded with specific content that can be tailored to any personal situation. And from the growth it experienced and the feedback it received on the editorials, featured guest articles, and Model Portfolios, it quickly became clear that SMI was meeting a need.
1992 - THE SOUND MIND INVESTING HANDBOOK IS PUBLISHED
As the company grew, so did the number of questions subscribers had about retirement vehicles, college plans, insurance needs, savings accounts, and the investing in general. So in 1992, The Sound Mind Investing Handbook was released. Its mission was to teach only what one needs to know, not everything there is to know. And it too was well received, even earning an ECPA Christian Book Award nomination. Today there are over 100,000 copies of the Sound Mind Investing Handbook in print.
2000 - SOUND MIND INVESTING LAUNCHES WEBSITE
As mainstream America's use of the Internet grew strongly throughout the late 1990s, SMI saw the tremendous potential for a web product to both complement and enhance its print newsletter service. So, SMI invested in growing its staff, and In March of 2000 launched SoundMindInvesting.com. The Lord blessed that effort and it was well received, growing to over 8,000 web members today.
2005 - THE SOUND MIND INVESTING FUND LAUNCHES
A common refrain during the first 15 years of SMI's existence was, "I love your Upgrading strategy, but can you do it for me?" In 2005, Austin, Mark and the other members of SMI's management team partnered with another firm to form SMI Advisory Services, an independent entity, in order to launch The Sound Mind Investing Fund (SMIFX). For the first time, readers and other investors could follow a similar Upgrading approach to what the SMI newsletter practices, but have it professionally managed for them on a daily basis. It was the perfect solution for those who saw the value in the Upgrading approach, but didn't want to implement the strategy themselves. The response to this new fund was immediate, with the fund's assets rocketing to over $200 million in less than two years. In January 2007, a second fund was launched, The SMI Managed Volatility Fund (SMIVX).
SOUND MIND INVESTING IS AMERICA'S BEST-SELLING
CHRISTIAN FINANCIAL NEWSLETTER
As Sound Mind Investing has continued to grow, it has continued to add innovative tools to aid readers in developing financial plans that fit their individual circumstances. Tools like the 401(k) Tracker, the Vanguard Income Portfolio Tool, the Message Boards and the Editor's Weblog have helped thousands of readers in the past and continue to assist new readers today.
Two decades have come and gone, but through all this exciting change and growth, a simple Mission Statement has guided everything we do:
Sound Mind Investing exists to help individuals understand and apply Biblically-based principles for making spending and investing decisions in order that:
1. their future financial security would be strengthened, and
2. their giving to worldwide missionary efforts for the cause of Christ would accelerate.
In other words, we want to help you have more so you can give more.