Focused, client-centred investing is a game-changer in British Columbia
The boutique business model might be the most powerful and most enduring business model in the investment industry today. While Canada’s five largest banks and national fund companies manage most of Canadians' investable assets, there is growing momentum for a different investment experience. Enter the boutique firm concept—a growing, thriving independent business model that provides personal contact, local connection, and a client-centred investment focus.
Allan Pankratz, president of boutique investing firm Ballantyne Capital, spent more than two decades working for various large financial institutions. He garnered valuable knowledge, including the realization that big-firm investing wasn’t for him.
“Over time, I realized the boutique business model was more aligned with my beliefs, such as having more autonomy to build a company that will stay true to its fundamental purpose,” Pankratz says.Courtesy of Ballantyne Capital.
He collaborated with some like-minded professionals to establish Ballantyne Capital. The firm is built around a set of core investment skills and offers clients a highly focused product set and target market—key traits of a boutique firm.
While the national firms are efficient at what they do, as a result of many competing stakeholders, the client’s best interest is sometimes neglected.
“Boutiques are not interested in marketing their service with expensive advertising campaigns or trying to increase client market share through mergers and acquisitions,” Pankratz says. “Their primary focus is doing what they enjoy best—managing money for clients.”
Two essential aspects of a boutique are ownership and independence. These attributes help to ensure that the long-term interests of clients and the firm is more aligned.
Most independent firms have a managing partner structure whereby key investment professionals have ownership in the company, and thus everyone acts as owners. “This is a valuable way to attract and retain experienced people and to ensure our clients’ interests are always paramount,” Pankratz says. “We manage our own money alongside our clients and invest capital in the firm. When our clients do well, we do well.”
Another crucial difference is the ability to build and maintain an entrepreneurial and service-oriented culture, which is essential to achieving success. “As a result of this type of business model, independent firms can successfully compete with the bank-owned firms,” Pankratz says. “We attract investors who prefer this type of relationship, especially business owners.”
Learn more about Ballantyne Capital at www.ballantynecap.com/.