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Unleashing the Entrepreneurial Spirit to Support Clients and Community: Nicola Wealth’s Modus Operandi

Nicola Wealth, one of Canada’s fastest growing private investment counsels, has made its mark in the wealth management industry through its entrepreneurial spirit, remarkable growth and commitment to "sharing the pie."

From humble beginnings to noteworthy national growth, Nicola Wealth exemplifies excellence in the financial sector and corporate citizenship. One can find the company’s beginnings in 1994, in a small Creekside office just west of Granville Island in Vancouver. Established to address the unique financial needs of incorporated professionals, business owners, and executives, a small but mighty team of seven under the leadership of John Nicola served 150 client families with $80 million in assets under management (AUM).

As the firm continued to grow organically, a notable inflection point occurred when Nicola Wealth merged with Waterstreet Wealth Management, which was owned by Nicola’s Wealth’s current president, David Sung. Since then, the financial advisory firm has experienced significant growth, evolving into a financial powerhouse with nearly 500 employees, offices across Canada, approximately 5000 high-net-worth client families and institutions, and managing $14 billion in assets for those clients.

Sung explains the secret to the firm’s success: “Our share the pie philosophy lies at the heart of our purpose and provides a foundation for our growth.”

Built on an abundance mindset, the firm’s share the pie philosophy is based on the belief that collaboration, growth and success should be beneficial to all stakeholders. Internally, Nicola Wealth has implemented a relatively generous program that includes profit-sharing and a share purchase program, allowing all staff members to have a stake in the firm’s success, to which they have contributed.

John Nicola also attributes growth to share the pie. “My 43% in 2023 is now worth exponentially more than what my 100% was worth 29 year ago,” he says.

Nicola Wealth’s growth trajectory has been nothing short of impressive. With a clear vision of becoming the largest independent private investment counsel firm in Canada, the firm has strategically expanded its operations, with wealth advisors based across the country in Toronto, Kelowna, Victoria and Calgary, and by strategically acquiring complimentary businesses.

Although Nicola Wealth celebrates corporate growth, its most important and meaningful directive is “sharing the pie” with the broader community beyond the walls of the organization. Nicola Wealth recently demonstrated its commitment to philanthropic programs by onboarding Teresa Virani, formerly of Science World, as Executive Director, Philanthropy. Her mandate is to align and integrate the various charitable initiatives to optimize the impact of all efforts, including managing donor advised funds through the Nicola Wealth Private Giving Foundation (NWPGF), corporate giving, and community partnerships.

David Sung and his wife. Credit: Nicola Wealth

Nicola Wealth inspires and supports clients’ philanthropic efforts though NWPGF, a platform that offers tax planning benefits while supporting charitable endeavors, helping families effectively build legacies that endure generations. The firm covers all administration costs for the donor advised fund, effectively streamlining charitable giving to align clients’ philanthropic intentions with their financial strategies.

As an active corporate citizen, Nicola Wealth aims to raise the bar for other Canadian businesses. The firm contributes a percentage of revenue to raising the bar on corporate citizenship. Its commitment to giving back is exemplified through the Nicola Wealth charitable giving committee, Nicola Wealth Gives Back. Through this committee, the firm facilitates corporate donations and volunteer opportunities, partnering with various charitable causes across Canada and beyond.

Between Nicola Wealth’s corporate giving, community partnerships and facilitated client philanthropy, the company helped donate over $36 million into communities across Canada in 2022.

Nicola Wealth’s journey showcases the power of an entrepreneurial spirit, purpose-driven growth and a commitment to sharing success with all stakeholders. With its client-centric approach, advanced planning strategies and dedication to philanthropy, Nicola Wealth extends its momentum as it continues to leave a lasting positive impact on its clients, employees and communities.


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Nicola Wealth Management Ltd. (Nicola Wealth) is registered as a Portfolio Manager, Exempt Market Dealer and Investment Fund Manager with the required securities commissions. 

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Created by BCBusiness in partnership with Nicola Wealth