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Got ideas? Company crowdsources investment motifs

Trending 'motif' trades

Think of them as crowdsourced investment themes.

What Motif Investing does is, essentially, allow its customers to create their own exchange-traded funds, co-founder and CEO Hardeep Walia said Tuesday on CNBC's "Halftime Report."

"Our customers like to think of them as customizable, no-fee ETFs, except there are no fees associated with them, other than our flat transaction (fee)," he said. "Customers have 35,000 motifs in six months, and you can get paid if someone buys one of your motifs that you've built."

Read More Have an investing idea? Build your own theme-based ETF

Walia said that his company was watching three hot motifs: Rental Nation, Recent IPOs and Modern Warfare.

Rental Nation, for example, is a rental real estate investment trust that was up 13.6 percent year to date, although over the past 12 months was up only 1 percent. Stocks within the motif included such names as Equity Residential, Essex Property Trust and Avalon Bay Communities.

Modern Warfare, by contrast, was up 8.1 year to date, with such names as Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, L-3 Communications Holdings, General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin among its holdings.

Asia outpaced Europe in defense spending for the first time last year, Walia said. "And now 20 percent of revenues from all these companies are coming from the emerging markets. So, it's an interesting play, one that most people didn't expect."