Massimo Hilber of Marcuard Asia talks about the opportunities and potential for independent wealth advice and the multi-family office concept in the region.
Date: July 2010
Given that the battle for talent has just begun – and will continue in the coming years – he said this makes it important for firms to have the right balance between clients and advisers, and to constantly train advisers to bring them to the required level of etiquette and professionalism.
For firms who get this right, Hilber said the opportunities are enormous in a growing region such as Asia.
This is a key reason why a number of independent asset managers such as Marcuard are launching or expanding in Singapore.
At the same as clients’ interests are getting increasingly global, it is important to offer alternative investment opportunities, he explained.
This requires being on the ground to be close to Asian fund managers to monitor them and be in constant contact with them to deliver results for clients.
According to Hilber, independent asset managers can add value to clients by making sure they invest the right proportion of their wealth into strategies intended to create further wealth.
However, he added, the most important part of a client’s wealth should be invested with a bias towards capital protection.
Given that Marcuard’s clients are already wealthy, Hilber said the firm’s main duty is to ensure they stay rich, and therefore stay loyal.
He said that given it is not possible for clients to be experts in their own fields as well as in investing, it is important for them to have a second opinion through their asset manager and be shown what types of risks they might be taking – for their own portfolio as well as for their family, their legacy and succession planning.
Key success factors
Achieving the results which clients are looking for, and delivering the service which clients have requested, are key success factors in this business, explained Hilber.
This is not only in terms of performance, he added, explaining that he is also interested in attracting the right talent to come and join the firm as partners, rather than just another staff member.
This means individuals who share the investment philosophy, who come with a reasonable amount of entrepreneurialism, and who won’t move to another firm to get a slightly better package, explained Hilber.
Such continuity will ultimately benefit the client and guarantee success, he said.