- October 1, 2021: Vol. 8, Number 9

What is the most exciting thing happening in private wealth?

by contributing executives

Industry executives discuss what they consider the most exciting thing happening in private wealth.

Mark Earley, CEO, Hines Securities

The democratization of asset classes available to the individual investor is an exciting trend in the private wealth space. For years, individual investors were only able to invest in individual stocks, bonds and mutual funds. With the creation of new product structures that have institutional pricing and allow for lower net-worth requirements, individual investors can now invest in private equity, hedge funds and real estate programs, among others, designed for institutions, family offices or high-net-worth individuals.

Mike Bendix, CEO, DFPG Investments

We see more and more private wealth professionals migrating their businesses away from traditional “wirehouse” institutions to the independent broker/dealer and RIA channels. This is a clear sign that advisers want greater control and ownership of their practice, from branding and technology to growth and marketing initiatives. Advisers view their independent broker/dealer or RIA as a partner whose products and platform allow them to be more entrepreneurial while at the same time providing a better experience for their retail clients.

Dan Kreuter, CEO, Gladstone Group

The most exciting thing we see is the monetization and accelerated convergence of independent wealth RIAs, driven by their predictable revenue streams and durable client relationships. The backdrop of talented, entrepreneurial principals and team members, and a proven and repeatable growth strategy combine to drive a premium value. In essence, RIAs — particularly those who are functioning more as a business than a practice — are in a sweet spot in that they serve clients at a high level; have become a desirable landing place for talented employees; and are highly coveted acquisition targets for mega-RIAs, banks, retirement/benefits/tax providers, and private equity-backed aggregators. In summary, there has been a pronounced escalation of value in the equity of closely held RIAs in the private wealth space, and the means to unlock that value.

Jim Condon, president and managing partner, Strategic Capital Fund Management

One of the most exciting things we see has been the digital revolution taking place across the globe. Rapid adoption of technology was already a strong trend, but COVID forced a huge portion of an unwilling population to finally embrace technology. The immense changes taking place with 5G networks and new technologies like autonomous cars, virtual reality and artificial intelligence are ushering in what many consider to be the fourth industrial revolution. It’s likely there will be opportunities in both the equity markets and in the underlying infrastructure that’s needed to support our insatiable demand for technology, information and connectivity.

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