Fiercely Privately Held

Fiercely Privately Held

KATHERINE LINTZfounder and partner Firm: Financial Management Partners Age: 57 Years in biz: 33 AUM: $1.4 billion Designations, licenses: CFP The staff of 21 at Financial Management Partners, a multi-family office in Clayton, Mo., with $1.4 billion in assets under management, includes CPAs, a lawyer, and even a teacher who handles financial education programs for its clients. Founder and partner Katherine

KATHERINE LINTZ
founder and partner

Firm: Financial Management Partners

Age: 57

Years in biz: 33

AUM: $1.4 billion

Designations, licenses: CFP

The staff of 21 at Financial Management Partners, a multi-family office in Clayton, Mo., with $1.4 billion in assets under management, includes CPAs, a lawyer, and even a teacher who handles financial education programs for its clients. Founder and partner Katherine Lintz likes having the expertise she needs within reach, so she can provide the high-touch service that her clients want. But it comes at a price. Most RIAs have margins of 40 to 50 percent, Lintz says; “We would do very, very well if we were in the 20 to 25 percent margin.”

One of the MFO industry's big challenges is providing a wide-ranging array of services to clients, Lintz says. “I think there's a huge value there, but it is not scalable, so there are many, many firms that really are going to have trouble delivering that because it will hurt their margins, and they won't like that. Multi-family office margins will never be what the margins of the normal wealth management RIA will be.”

Fortunately, FMP believes in slow, steady and considered growth. Lintz says the fee-only company has intentionally grown at an unhurried pace since its founding 22 years ago, although Lintz now shares ownership with seven other colleagues. “Our first priority is to take care of our current customers,” she says. “We don't have the pressure to grow for growth's sake or to meet any external goals. We are privately held intentionally, and fiercely privately held, frankly, so we can make sure that our growth is additive, allows us to do as good or better a job for our existing clients.”

The average client has a net worth of more than $20 million. FMP focuses on long-term relationships: “We see things in decades, not years,” Lintz says. The practice's strategy focuses as much on what it doesn't offer as what it does; it doesn't try to be all things to all clients. For example, FMP doesn't offer concierge services such as bill paying, property management and travel arrangements. It will provide advice on a house construction contract and make sure the family aircraft is properly insured, but it would rather help the family hire an executive assistant for the day-to-day arrangements. “We don't feel that's our highest and best use,” Lintz says. “We don't want to get pulled into that.”

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