Insight

Why branching out on their own was the best decision these wealth managers ever made

Excerpt taking from Citywire Wealth Manager

Regulation and the rising costs of operating a business made many in the industry argue that it would be the end for boutiques.

The sheer number of mergers and acquisitions in the investment management sector also resulted in concerns that the industry would be ruled by a few giants and consolidation would only accelerate, reducing consumer choice.

But boutiques have defied the naysayers and are thriving, differentiating themselves by the services they offer and the clients they are targeting. In fact, for every acquisition announced there have also been stories of wealth managers leaving these big firms to set up their own ventures. This has been an on-going trend over the years and will no doubt continue.

So, for those yet to launch a business, but who are dreaming of being their own boss one day, we compiled some tips for you. We asked the founders of six boutiques what the best advice they received was when they set up their business and what, if anything, they would do differently if they could go back in time.

From wishing they had just done it sooner to learning to be realistic about what you can achieve and when, here is what these boutique bosses learnt along the way.

Question asked to Jon Bowes “What was the best piece of advice you got about starting up?”

“There are two pieces of advice which we are incredibly grateful for. The first is to make sure that you get the very best legal and accounting advice. I think that it is too easy just to get excited and focused on “doing business” without enough preparation and implementation of the best structure for your firm. It is definitely worth paying independent advisers to help you with this as they have the experience and can explain the consequences of so many areas that you just don’t think of.

The second piece of advice I would offer is that when you put your business plan and budgets together for the next five years, halve your expected income and double your expected costs. By the time we had our final plan it looked so very different to the first iteration. This focused our minds on controlling the costs to ensure that the set up period is sustainable. In our case our costs have indeed been greater that we thought at first, however, we have exceeded our income budgets significantly. We have therefore been able to adjust our growth plans accordingly from a position of financial strength.”

Question asked to Jon Bowes “What would you have done differently if you could go back in time?”

“We should have done this five years earlier!”