Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 11:00 am
Monarch Wealth Management Inc., a wealth management firm founded six months ago in Brookfield, aims to serve both business owners looking to retire and those who are transitioning from previous careers into a new business.
Monarch blends traditional wealth management services like asset management and investment advice with founder and certified financial planner Jose Freyre’s knowledge of mergers and acquisitions and succession planning.
“There are two reasons people are referred to us,” Freyre said. “Either people are in a business and they’re trying to figure out what to do to exit, or they’re the opposite – they’re people getting into a business. I get into it looking at the capitalization and financing situation, making sure that things work (on a personal level).”
Retirement and succession planning and wealth management for business owners are more complex than for other affluent individuals because one or more businesses are involved, Freyre said. Monarch Wealth Management, with its tight focus on a smaller number of clients, was developed with that complexity in mind.
“There needs to be a lot of education for them to sell their business and it takes time and creativity to structure deals,” Freyre said. “When the economy and bankers start to tighten up, then you’ve got to get creative.”
Before he founded Monarch Wealth Management, Freyre worked as a financial consultant with A.G. Edwards & Sons Inc. A.G. Edwards was acquired by Wachovia last year. Because he was planning to create an independent wealth management firm within the next several years, Freyre decided to create Monarch as an independent wealth management firm last December, a few years before he had planned.
Next month, Freyre will move Monarch Wealth Management from Brookfield to offices in downtown Milwaukee at 250 E. Wisconsin Ave. The firm currently has two employees, and will grow by at least one person this year.
However, Freyre wants to limit Monarch Wealth Management’s future growth to maintain its high-touch relationship with clients.
“My idea is to take the family office concept and bring it down to the middle market,” Freyre said. “That market is now primarily served by national firms (with local offices). Those companies, they are first and foremost investment management – they’re paid to gather assets. When it comes to the complex stuff, it’s not their cup of tea.”
The firm now limits itself to 50 clients, largely because of the large amount of time it spends working them, Freyre said. He hopes to grow the firm by four to five new clients per year.
“We’re very picky about who we work with,” he said. “It’s not about the money, but can we really make an impact, meet their expectations and have fun doing it? We need to have the time to get into some deep, complex issues. And if you have a volume shop, you can’t do that.”
Part of Monarch’s process is scheduling an annual “summit” with other advisors that work with its clients, including their attorneys, accountants and stock brokers. The idea is to get all of the client’s advisors on the same page, allowing each to have a thorough understanding of what may be happening in the client’s life for the calendar year.
“We have an extremely deep relationship with our clients and that becomes even more important when we want to bring the whole team together,” Freyre said. “Because of the amount of time we’re spending with them, we tend to be the one who knows what is going on with the family.
The long hours that clients spend with Monarch Wealth Management lead to a deep relationship with the firm, Freyre said, and allow the firm to do a better job.
“We think of ourselves as CFOs for individuals,” he said. “We want to get ahold of where you as an individual and your company is going, and to take care of all of the issues that need to be addressed.”
For more information on Monarch Wealth Management Inc., visit www.monarchwm.com.