WHAT TO WATCH IN 2021
From low interest rates to a rise in small caps, key trends to keep an eye on
How one advisor built her practice by empowering fellow women
SHELTER FROM THE STORM WWW.WEALTHPROFESSIONAL.CA ISSUE 9.01
Why no-frills multi-family housing is a hot investment right now
Who came out on top in Wealth Professional’s annual ranking of Canada’s best advisors?
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CONTENTS 40 FINDING OPPORTUNITY IN THE EVERYDAY
TOP 50 ADVISORS
They’re managing a combined $18.5 billion on behalf of Canadian investors. Find out who made it onto WP’s annual list of the best advisors in the industry
As the head of Advocis, Greg Pollock has always made education a priority, raising the standard of professionalism for advisors along the way
UPFRONT 02 Editorial
Why retirement planning should be front and centre in 2021 Key data that should be on your radar this month
Got a story or suggestion, or just want to find out some more information?
With a focus on housing that appeals to essential workers, Avenue Living’s real estate portfolio has thrived during the pandemic
06 News analysis
The trends advisors will want to keep an eye on in the year ahead
This month’s big movers, shakers and new products
10 ETF update
TD rolls out a new initiative designed to drive more investors to its ETF portfolios
12 Alternative investment update
Could Bitcoin soon become the new safe haven of choice?
KNOWLEDGE IS POWER
Jackie Porter became an advisor after taking control of her finances – and now she’s teaching other women to do the same
How advisors can help business owners preserve their companies when going through a separation or divorce
44 Truly transformational
Q Wealth is bringing advisors a new, tech-enabled way to manage their practices
48 Other life
Hitting the trails with advisor and cross-country skier Cory Garlock
CULTIVATING RELATIONSHIPS IN THE DIGITAL AGE As more business moves online, follow these four steps to maintain good relationships with clients
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13/01/2021 4:33:14 AM
Making retirement planning a priority
s we begin a new year, we’re still saddled with an old story: COVID19. One area that could be subject to long-term implications from the pandemic is retirement planning. As companies have adapted to the new normal, many have restructured or pulled back their retirement plans for employees. In a recent conversation with Wealth Professional, Kevin Gopaul, global head of ETFs at BMO Global Asset Management, noted this trend and even raised the notion that government and large pension plans could soon be under stress as the infrastructure that has existed for decades falls away.
Advisors need to address retirement planning with clients to make sure they’re actively planning and not simply reacting when it’s too late The monetary and fiscal stimulus extended during the pandemic will eventually need to be paid for, and it will come in the form of higher taxes and potentially inflation. When everyday investors see their tax bills or notice the increase in their cost of living, that’s when they’ll start to feel the pinch – and so will their retirement plans. The current low interest rate environment will only compound this issue by making it harder to save for retirement and earn yield from fixed income investments. That’s why Gopaul thinks all advisors need to bring retirement planning to the forefront in 2021 and address it with clients to make sure they’re actively planning and not simply reacting when it’s too late. This can also be an opportunity for advisors to go beyond the traditional components of a retirement plan and explore new options that fit the needs of their clients. Planning for retirement has been largely out of mind because of the strong run capital markets enjoyed over the last decade. But as we continue to navigate uncharted waters, it’s time to pay closer attention. The team at Wealth Professional
ISSUE 9.01 EDITORIAL
SALES & MARKETING
Editor Darren Matte
Vice President, Media and Client Strategy Dane Taylor
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ART & PRODUCTION Designer Marla Morelos Production Coordinator Kim Kandravy Client Success Coordinator Kshipra Dhindaw
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CORPORATE President & CEO Tim Duce Office/Traffic Manager Marni Parker Events and Conference Manager Chris Davis Chief Information Officer Colin Chan Human Resources Manager Julia Bookallil Global COO George Walmsley Global CEO Mike Shipley
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EMERGE ARK ETFS
YOUR INNOVATION PARTNER IN CANADA Make investing in the future with the Emerge ARK ETFs a part of your New Years Resolution! The Emerge ARK ETFs, sub-advised by ARK Invest, are at the forefront of global innovation and active management. Head into the future for 2021 with the Emerge ARK ETFs.
Performance as of January 11, 2021. **As of December 31, 2020 *Since Inception Annualized July 29, 2019.
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SPEAK TO YOUR ADVISOR ABOUT THE EMERGE ARK ETFS TODAY. Disclosure: Peformance is sourced from Morningstar Direct as of Jauary 11, 2021 and December 31, 2020. Commissions, management fees, brokerage fees and expenses may be associated with an investment in ETFs. Before investing, you should carefully consider the ETF’s investment objectives, strategies, risks, charges and expenses. This and other information is in the ETF’s prospectus, which may be obtained by visiting www.emergecm.ca or www.sedar.com. Please read the ETF prospectus carefully before you invest. An investment in an ETF is subject to risks and you can lose money on your investment. Detailed information regarding the specific risks of the ETF can be found in the prospectus. There can be no assurance that the ETF will achieve its investment objective. The ETF’s portfolio is more volatile than broad market averages. Units of the ETF are bought and sold at market price and there can be no guarantee that an active trading market for the ETF units will develop or be maintained, or that their listing will continue or remain unchanged. ETFs are not guaranteed. Their values change frequently. Past performance may not be repeated. The statements contained in this document are based on information believed to be reliable and are provided for information purposes only. Where such information is based in whole or in part on information provided by third parties, we cannot guarantee that is accurate, complete or current at all times. This document does not provide investment, tax or legal advice, and is not an offer or solicitation to buy. Graphs and charts are used for illustrative purposes only and do not reflect future values or returns on investment. Particular investment strategies should be evaluated according to an investor’s investment objectives and tolerance for risk. Emerge Canada Inc. and related entities are not liable for any error or omission in the information or for any loss or damage suffered.
EMERGECM.CA | 1.833. 363.7432 | MARKETING@EMERGECM.CA 02-03_Editorial-SUBBED.indd 3
13/01/2021 4:12:24 AM
STATISTICS ETFs END 2020 ON A HIGH NOTE
AN UNEVEN RECOVERY
While the major markets had begun to recover from the effects of COVID-19 by the end of 2020, the recovery hasn’t brought the same returns to all major indexes. As of late December, the S&P 500 Index had a one-year return of 15.51%, while the one-year return for the TSX/S&P Composite Index was just 3.12%.
Net inflows into Canadian ETFs in November 2020
20,000 17,066.12 16,423.62
$28.25 billion YTD inflows into Canadian ETFs as of the end of November – a new high
Total assets invested in Canadian ETFs as of the end of November
Increase in total Canadian ETF assets between October and November 2020 Source: ETFGI; all figures in US$
FED OFFERS OPTIMISTIC OUTLOOK In late December, the US Federal Reserve released its latest projections for GDP, inflation and the federal funds rate. Compared to the Fed’s June 2020 projections, the new numbers conveyed greater confidence in the overall economic outlook. June 2020 projection
REAL GDP Q4 YEAR-OVER-YEAR CHANGE
5% 4% 3% 2% 1% 0% -1% -2.4% -2% -3% -4% -5% -6% -6.5% -7% -8%
December 2020 projection
INFLATION (PERSONAL CONSUMPTION EXPENDITURES) 2.0%
3.2% 1.8% 1.8%
FEDERAL FUNDS RATE 2.5%
0.5% 0.1% 0.1%
Source: Scotiabank Economics, US Federal Reserve
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S&P 500 INDEX PERFORMANCE
WILL BITCOIN’S MOMENTUM LAST?
Bitcoin’s value began to rise in the fall of 2020 and spiked in December, passing US$20,000 per token by mid-month. Many analysts have touted both Bitcoin and gold as hedges for portfolios, so the cryptocurrency’s popularity looks poised to continue in 2021.
3,310.24 3,115.86 2,830.71
BITCOIN VALUE PER TOKEN
TSX/S&P COMPOSITE INDEX PERFORMANCE 17,527.77 16,644.99 15,698.87
1/2/20 2/1/20 3/1/20 4/1/20 5/1/20 6/1/20 7/1/20 8/1/20 9/1/20 10/1/20 11/1/20 12/1/20 1/1/21
Source: CoinDesk; all figures in US$
CANADA’S PER-CAPITA NET WORTH SOARS
RETAIL SALES CONTINUE TO BOUNCE BACK
The rebound in global stock markets added $94.4 billion in net foreign assets to Canada’s national net worth, bringing the country’s per-capita net worth to a new high.
Canadian retail sales were up 0.4% in October, exceeding initial estimates and heralding the sixth consecutive monthly increase since April. The sector’s resilience has helped increase Canada’s GDP growth forecast to 5.00%.
PER-CAPITA NATIONAL NET WORTH
TOTAL MONTHLY RETAIL SALES IN CANADA $55bn
Source: Statistics Canada, Scotia Economics
October 2020 Source: Statistics Canada
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Themes to watch in 2021 From the economic impact of COVID-19 vaccines to low interest rates and greater global certainty, 2021 is poised to bring additional shifts to the wealth management landscape
WITH 2020 in the books, many advisors are now wondering what 2021 has in store. As vaccine distribution begins and a new administration heads to the White House, the outlook for the global economy seems a bit brighter. But 2021 will also bring new issues for advisors to keep an eye on. “When the vaccine becomes broadly distributed, I expect economic recovery to take off,” says Kristina Hooper, chief global market strategist at Invesco. “The economy in 2021 will have two distinct phases – the first will be slower, but then I think we’ll see capital
election,” she says. “We believe Joe Biden will be in the White House in January, so that uncertainty has been removed. A return to traditional policy carries with it greater predictability. Historically, when uncertainty goes down, capex spending and confidence goes up.” Amit Goel, an investment counsellor and portfolio manager at Hillsdale Investment Management, agrees that “the positivity on a vaccine is great news for the worldwide economy. The consumer has been resilient during COVID – that part of the economy has
“I think we’ll see capital expenditure pick up because when economic policy uncertainty goes down, business investment goes up” Kristina Hooper, Invesco expenditure pick up because when economic policy uncertainty goes down, business investment goes up.” Hooper believes the overarching theme of 2021 will be greater certainty and clarity. “One of the biggest fears [in 2020] was a contested
held up very well.” Now Goel is hopeful that distribution of a vaccine can spur recovery in hard-hit sectors like travel. “Where I look to next is cyclicals, industrials and smaller caps, because they will be the maximum beneficiaries of the
economy opening up,” he says. Hooper likewise expects cyclicals and small caps to perform well in 2021, but she also sees carryover from one of 2020’s standout performers. “I wouldn’t write off technology because a lot of themes driving tech are enduring,” she says. “They were present before the pandemic, accelerated during, and tech has staying power.” Another area that will require careful portfolio adjusting is fixed income, as interest rates look to remain low for foreseeable future. “I believe on the short end, the Fed is going to keep rates low longer, even as the economy takes off,” Hooper says. “That sets up an interesting environment that favours equities. In fixed income, it continues to push investors out on the risk spectrum. I think they go longer with Treasuries, move toward emerging market debt, high-yield and
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SMALL-CAP EQUITIES BEGIN TO RALLY PERFORMANCE OF THE S&P SMALL-CAP 600 INDEX 1,200
400 Jan 2020
Jan 2021 Source: S&P Dow Jones Indices
investment-grade credit.” “For 2021, I don’t see a good environment investing in long-dated bonds,” Goel adds. “There could be opportunities in corporate
and Hooper points out that there will likely be opportunities in that vein on the equities side, too. “In equities, globally, there will be more opportunities that present themselves, in emerging markets and Asia and also Europe, from a valuation perspective,” she says. She believes those opportunities will be driven in large part by the Biden administration and its likely return to a more traditional
“Where I look to next is cyclicals, industrials and smaller caps, because they will be the maximum beneficiaries of the economy opening up” Amit Goel, Hillsdale Investment Management bonds or high-yields, but the spreads have shrunk there as well. The opportunity for gains potential is limited in most fixed income asset classes.” That might lead investors to turn to emerging markets for fixed income exposure,
trade approach. “There could be specific issues that the US and China have, but they will deal with them through negotiations as opposed to tariffs,” she says. “Trade wars have added volatility to the US market over the last few years, and
emerging markets and Asia should benefit from not having them.” Hooper adds that Canada is likely to benefit from warming relations with the US as well. Goel agrees that Biden will be more open to global trade and growth, but he warns not to expect major changes overnight, noting that Biden still might have to appease voters who want a harder stance toward China, as the US and China are technically global economic foes. However, in the current environment, Goel remains bullish on opportunities in developed markets such as Australia and, to some extent, Europe, especially when it comes to value and small-cap stocks. Both Hooper and Goel believe 2021 signals the beginning of a rotation in the market as value returns. They believe advisors should start to overweight small caps and cyclicals; Goel points out that active management will play a big role as advisors look to add value for clients. “I think advisors need to create opportunities for their clients, where clients see real value-add,” he says. “No matter the vehicle, advisors need to start looking at where they can add value.”
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INTELLIGENCE CORPORATE ACQUIRER
Landry Investment Management
The merger of the two Montreal investment firms has created an entity with more than $400 million in AUM
Nasdaq’s US$2.75 billion purchase of fraud detection firm Verafin represents the biggest Canadian software takeover since 2007
Sun Life Financial
Crescent Capital Group
Sun Life is set to acquire a majority stake in the Los Angelesbased alternative credit investment manager
The acquisition of Ario’s finance as a service technology platform will allow Thinking Capital to better support Canadian small businesses
Alberta Investment Management Corporation
AIMCo has selected Accelex’s tech solution for private markets data management
Borrowell will use MX’s data cleansing platform to enhance its Boost bill tracking tool
DMAT Capital Management
Horizons has tapped Barry Allan's DMAT Capital Management to serve as a subadvisor for its high-yield bond ETF
Meridian Credit Union
The two lenders have partnered to bring more lending solutions to small businesses in Ontario
AGF adds four new funds to its lineup
AGF Investments has expanded its fund shelf with two new ETFs and two new portfolio funds. The new ETFs, which were launched in October on the NEO Exchange, include the AGF Global Sustainable Growth Equity ETF (AGSG), which invests in global equity securities, and the AGF Global Opportunities Bond ETF (AGLB), which focuses on corporate and global fixed income securities. AGF also unveiled two new portfolio mutual funds based on the AGFiQ Global Balanced ETF Portfolio and the AGFiQ Global Income ETF Portfolio, both of which are currently managed by the AGFiQ team. Both portfolios invest in global equities and fixed income.
Thinking Capital bolsters small business capabilities Purpose Financial subsidiary Thinking Capital had a busy end to 2020, announcing both the acquisition of fintech startup Ario and a new partnership with Meridian Credit Union. With its purchase of Ario, Thinking Capital gains a tech platform that uses proprietary data and algorithms to offer cost-efficient digital lending and cash flow management solutions to small businesses. Thinking Capital said the acquisition will allow it to better support Canadian small businesses through their recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The firm’s partnership with Ontario-based Meridian Credit Union is likewise geared toward helping small businesses recover from the pandemic. Meridian will leverage Thinking Capital’s newly bolstered lending platform to allow Ontario business owners to apply for loans online, receive a credit decision in real time and have funds in their account just days later. “This is a win-win value proposition for all parties, especially in today’s environment,” said Kevin VanKampen, Meridian’s vice-president of business banking.
Purpose adds to structured product family
Purpose Investments has taken another innovative step into the structured product space with the launch of the Purpose Structured Equity Growth Fund. Building on the success of the Purpose Structured Equity Yield Portfolio, the new fund replicates the outcome of multiple structured products in one product, using an active derivativesbased strategy that combines growth and protection. The fund is available in two versions – Series F (with a 0.65% management fee) and Series A (1.65% management fee) – with a tax-efficient corporate class structure to further maximize returns.
13/01/2021 4:16:02 AM
PEOPLE Scotia debuts suite of low-carbon funds
Scotia Global Asset Management has launched a suite of three Scotia Low Carbon Funds that promise diversified exposure to high-quality investments with lower carbon intensity than their respective benchmark indexes. The funds include the Scotia Low Carbon Canadian Fixed Income Fund, designed to generate regular income and modest capital gains; the Scotia Low Carbon Global Balanced Fund, designed to generate income and long-term capital growth; and the Scotia Low Carbon Global Equity Fund, designed to provide long-term capital growth.
Ninepoint launches its first series of ETFs
Ninepoint Partners has burst onto the NEO Exchange with the introduction of ETF versions of four of its successful strategies. The four new ETFs include the Ninepoint Diversified Bond Fund (NBND), a total-return strategy that invests in global corporate and government fixed income; the Ninepoint High Interest Savings Fund (NSAV), which invests in highinterest savings accounts at Schedule I banks; the Ninepoint Gold and Precious Minerals Fund (GLDE), which invests in gold, precious metals and minerals, and related certificates; and the Ninepoint Silver Equities Class (SLVE), which invests primarily in silver-producing companies.
Guardian Capital Group
Head of Canadian fixed income
Sun Life Global Investments
EVP, wealth strategy and enablement
President and CEO
Institut québécois de planification financière
President and CEO
Picton Mahoney Asset Management
Managing director, head of retail business
Global head, client solutions
National sales manager
Wellington-Altus nabs industry vet A little more than a month after leaving his role as president of Sun Life Global Investments (SLGI), Jordy Chilcott joined Wellington-Altus Private Wealth as executive vice-president of wealth strategy and enablement. Chilcott has more than three decades of industry experience, including leadership roles at SLGI, Dynamic Funds and Scotiabank. At Wellington-Altus, he will be responsible for leading the firm’s wealth management teams and future asset management initiatives. “It really seems time right now for the technology-driven independent firms,” Chilcott told WP shortly after accepting his new role. “We are seeing it with the growth of Wellington-Altus, and in a few others, but I see it only getting better.”
Picton Mahoney names head of retail business Equitable Bank offers flexible reverse mortgage
Equitable Bank has introduced a new reverse mortgage product designed to give Canadian retirees more options to access their home equity. The new Reverse Mortgage Flex allows homeowners to access up to 55% of their home’s value, up from the previous limit of 40%. A reverse mortgage gives homeowners access to the existing equity in their home, turning a portion of it into a source of cash, taxand payment-free. “The addition of Reverse Mortgage Flex is a critical part of our decumulation strategy, one aimed at providing more benefits for Canadian seniors,” said Equitable Bank’s Mahima Poddar.
Picton Mahoney Asset Management has appointed Michael Lynds as managing director and head of retail business. Lynds comes to Picton Mahoney with nearly 25 years of experience at international wealth management and technology firms of all sizes. Most recently, as vice-president of global wealth, intellectual property and consulting at CGI, he managed a team across North America and Europe to drive product development and oversee business development activity, while also helping to incubate new technology capabilities on behalf of wealth management firms. “The opportunity to return to my financial services roots with Picton Mahoney is one of the easiest decisions I’ve made in my career,” Lynds said. “I look forward to harnessing the technologies that will deliver the next phase of growth in alternative investment solutions.”
13/01/2021 4:16:04 AM
ETF UPDATE NEWS BRIEFS Manulife launches five new factorfocused ETFs
Manulife Investment Management has expanded its ETF lineup with the launch of five new factor-focused Smart ETFs on the TSX. Consisting of three Canadian fixed income ETFs and two equity ETFs, the new funds give investors access to Manulife’s investment expertise in active quantitative strategies within an ETF structure. The new ETFs include the Manulife Smart Short-Term Bond ETF (TERM), Manulife Smart Core Bond ETF (BSKT), Manulife Smart Corporate Bond ETF (CBND), Manulife Smart Dividend ETF (CDIV) and the Manulife Smart US Dividend ETF, which is available in both hedged (UDIV) and unhedged (UDIV.B) versions.
Scotia unveils four passive index-tracking products
Scotia Global Asset Management has launched four new index-tracking ETFs on the NEO Exchange. Subadvised by State Street Global Advisors, the suite of market-cap-weighted index ETFs aims to replicate the performance of broadly diversified Solactive market indexes. The new funds include the Scotia Canadian Bond Index Tracker ETF (SITB), Scotia Canadian Large Cap Equity Index Tracker ETF (SITC), Scotia US Equity Index Tracker ETF (SITU) and Scotia International Equity Index Tracker ETF (SITI). Management fees for the new suite range from 0.03% to 0.15%, and fixed administration fees range from 0.02% to 0.05%.
CIBC introduces ETF series based on its fixed income pools
CIBC Asset Management has launched three actively managed ETFs based on its CIBC Fixed Income Pools, a diverse mix of mutual funds and ETFs designed
to be a long-term core bond holding and featuring built-in rebalancing and tactical asset allocation. The new series – which includes the CIBC Conservative Fixed Income Pool, CIBC Core Fixed Income Pool and CIBC Core Plus Fixed Income Pool – provides investors with access to advanced bond strategies in a oneticket solution. The ETFs include actively managed investments in investmentgrade and high-yield government and corporate bonds across various geographies and currencies.
Franklin Templeton adds global growth ETF to lineup
Franklin Templeton Canada has expanded its active ETF lineup with the Franklin Global Growth Active ETF (FGGE), which targets quality companies worldwide whose prospects have yet to be recognized by the markets. Trading on the TSX, FGGE invests in the strong-performing, five-star-rated Franklin Global Growth Fund, which holds a concentrated portfolio of 35 to 40 global growth stocks. FGGE invests in companies located anywhere in the world, including up to a 20% allocation to emerging market equities. The ETF carries a management fee of 0.9%.
Hamilton ETFs unveils leveraged take on Canadian bank ETF
Hamilton ETFs has launched the Hamilton Canadian Bank 1.25x Leverage ETF (HCAL) on the TSX. A leveraged version of the Hamilton Canadian Bank Mean Reversion Index ETF, HCAL seeks to replicate a 1.25 times multiple of the Solactive Canadian Bank Mean Reversion Index. According to Hamilton ETFs managing partner Rob Wessel, “HCAL will provide investors with added exposure to the Canadian banking sector and [offers] enhanced return potential and a targeted yield of 6%+, making it one of the highest-yielding Canadian bank ETFs.”
Expanding the reach of ETFs A partnership between TD Asset Management and TD Direct Investing aims to introduce more clients to TDAM’s ETF family During the fourth quarter of 2020, TD announced the release of TD GoalAssist, a mobile app that allows investors to open accounts, set goals, and create and manage their portfolios. A partnership between two of the bank’s divisions, TD Asset Management and TD Direct Investing, TD GoalAssist gives clients the option of using one of TDAM’s One-Click ETF Portfolios or building their own portfolio using TD ETFs, with the option to include other securities. Users begin by establishing their goals, building out a plan to help them achieve those goals, establishing their risk profile and then either choosing a One-Click ETF Portfolio or building their own portfolio. There are no minimums or monthly fees, and TD’s suite of ETFs can be traded commission-free. For TDAM, which has already become the eighth largest ETF provider in Canada by AUM ($4.33 billion as of November 30, 2020), the offering represents another chance to grow its presence in the ETF landscape. “This gives us access to a different group of clients,” says Bruce Cooper, CEO of TDAM and SVP at TD Bank Group. “ETFs are now the vehicle of choice, so being able to access that group of clients and bring to them what we think is a strong group of products is terrific for us.”
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Cooper says one of the big benefactors of the new partnership will be TDAM’s One-Click ETF Portfolios, which were released last August. He feels their three risk profiles (conservative, moderate and aggressive) will resonate with most investors, and he expects them to generate strong interest from users of the TD GoalAssist app because they’re a simple alternative to building a portfolio.
“We’re extremely excited about the One-Click Portfolios and the role they can play in helping clients accomplish their goals” “We’re extremely excited about the OneClick Portfolios and the role they can play in helping clients accomplish their goals,” he says. “We launched three, and most clients will see themselves in one of those profiles. They have simple asset class construction, so we should see some uptake. We do also expect people to use the app who want to do things themselves and avail themselves of the full product lineup.” TDAM currently offers 34 ETFs as of the end of November, up from 12 in mid-2019. “The breadth of our lineup will continue to be on the platform, and as we launch new ETFs, they will find a place in TD GoalAssist,” Cooper says. “A couple years ago, I said we’d go for 30 to 40 ETFs, but we will continue to launch products. ESG, for example, is becoming popular with many clients, and we are excited about launching some products in that area.”
Mike Clare Vice-president and portfolio manager BROMPTON FUNDS
Years in the industry 17 Fast fact The Brompton Tech Leaders Income ETF (TLF) has consistently outperformed its CAD-hedged covered call technology ETF peers with a 19% per annum total return over five years, according to Morningstar Direct
A tech sector leader What has made your Brompton Tech Leaders Income ETF (TLF) so successful over the past five years? First, the tech sector has been strong as businesses and governments continue to go through a multi-year digital transformation, which has increased the demand for technology. Second, our active management approach has allowed us to capitalize on this trend, as we have focused the portfolio on leading companies with exposure to key themes in tech. At the same time, we have remained nimble in response to the ever-changing nature of technology. Third, we have been able to identify key companies beyond the FAANGs with dominant market positions in key growth markets. Last, our covered call program has provided reduced portfolio volatility and enhanced distributions for investors.
How much of an impact has the past year had on both the fund and tech investments in general? The pandemic has rapidly changed the way we live and work. However, we believe that many of these changes are an acceleration of existing trends, such as remote work and online shopping, which means they are here to stay. The result is that the digital transformation that businesses have been going through has advanced five to 10 years into the future, and this has accelerated the demand for technology products and services. This, in turn, has increased the demand for things like semiconductors and hardware that support these industries.
What are the advantages to having a covered call option program on a sector like tech? Two potential drawbacks for investors who invest in the tech sector are that the sector typically exhibits higher volatility than the overall market and that the companies in the sector generally have belowaverage dividend yields. A covered call program addresses both drawbacks. When we write call options on the underlying portfolio holdings, we are harnessing some of that volatility and using the option premiums we receive to supplement the portfolio’s cash flow and pay out higher distributions to investors.
What are some of the ways you approach the tech sector for this fund? The first thing we do is approach the tech sector more broadly than how it is commonly defined by various industry classification standards. Under these standards, the tech sector excludes companies that are often commonly viewed as tech stocks, like Amazon, Alphabet, Facebook, Netflix and many others. We use a much broader definition of the tech sector that includes these companies and gives us the best opportunity to structure a portfolio that is exposed to the key themes driving the tech market. The second thing we do is spend a lot of time identifying the key themes in the tech sector that are benefiting from secular tailwinds and the companies that have dominant market positions with exposure to those themes.
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ALTERNATIVE INVESTMENT UPDATE
Bitcoin finds new life as a portfolio hedge Amid ongoing fiscal stimulus, high-net-worth investors are turning to Bitcoin as a store of wealth
net-worth clients’ portfolios. Many observers are comparing Bitcoin to gold and its longstanding status as a safe haven, but Pye says it shouldn’t be one or the other and that they’re not perfectly correlated, even though they are both scarce assets. (Two years ago, the number of bitcoins was growing by 8%; three years from now, it will be down to 2%.) “If you’re not willing to buy it at $10,000 this year,” Pye says, “you better be willing to buy it at $100,000 four years from now because that’s where it’s going to be.”
“If you’re not willing to buy it at $10,000 this year, you better be willing to buy it at $100,000 four years from now” COVID-19 could prove to be a watershed moment for Bitcoin as high-net-worth individuals seek to hedge against extraordinary fiscal stimulus programs. The cryptocurrency ended 2020 on a tear, reaching new record highs. Fred Pye, president and CEO of 3iQ Corp., which launched The Bitcoin Fund last March, believes the pandemic is cementing the digital currency as a store of wealth. “The unbelievable amount of global liquidity created by COVID possibly doesn’t end well,” he says. “All the wealthiest people in the world have no choice but to consider some
kind of hedge against what happens when the taps get turned off. When you see some of the world’s biggest and brightest money managers and companies protecting their balance sheets and protecting their net worth with Bitcoin, you can see where the demand comes from. It’s really now a digital global hedge against consistent money printing.” Pye notes that there’s still huge skepticism in the advisor community about the digital currency, but the investments in his fund are growing as portfolio managers look to protect the long-term value of their high-
Alternative assets to top $17 trillion by 2025
By the end of 2025, global alternative assets are expected to rise to $17.16 trillion, according to a new report from Preqin. Private equity and private debt are expected to be the biggest drivers of growth, increasing annually by 16% and 11%, respectively; Preqin expects private equity to account for more than half of all alternative assets by 2025. The firm named Asia-Pacific the biggest growth market for alternative assets, predicting that assets there will rise from $1.62 trillion to $4.97 trillion over the next five years.
Originally envisioned as a peer-to-peer payment system that makes intermediaries redundant, Bitcoin’s role has clearly shifted. “A lot of people say, ‘I’m not going to buy Bitcoin until I can use it to buy a coffee at Starbucks,’” Pye says. “But the reality is, you do not use something that’s a store of wealth as a currency. Money is going digital, but it’ll be digital Canadian dollars, digital US dollars. You’ll be able to buy things by circumventing the banks and everything else in the future, but do not get it mixed up. Yes, Bitcoin can be a peer-to peer-currency, but it’s not – it’s a store of wealth.”
Caldas Gold lists gold-linked notes and warrants
Caldas Gold Corp., a Canadian junior mining company currently advancing a major expansion and modernization at its Marmato Project in Colombia, has completed the private placement offering of senior secured gold-linked notes worth US$83 million, along with over 16.6 million common share purchase warrants to holders of the subscription receipts. The notes are currently trading on the NEO Exchange under the symbol CGC.NT.U, while the warrants are trading on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol CGC.WT.
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Ray Sawicki SVP and CIO MANDEVILLE GROUP
Years in the industry 26 Fast fact Sawicki’s responsibilities at Mandeville include providing leadership for private and alternative investing
The importance of private equity in 2021 What’s your outlook for private equity in 2021? Private equity is a broad equity class, and it’s difficult to address all the potential impacts, but in general I expect it to continue to do well in 2021 for several key reasons. First, private equity focuses on long-term valuations, and it ignores the noise. As significant as COVID-19 has been for financial markets, it is a short-term distortion in the grand scheme of things. There is less effect on private investments because they don’t experience the day-to-day price changes that cause people to react. Investors are emotional creatures, and this past year saw high volatility; however, private equity investments are less liquid and more stable, providing less ability for investors to sell out or make decisions that do not consider the long term. Private equity promotes a longer-term decision-making process. There is also the benefit of a liquidity premium. Private investments are less immediately convertible to cash, but that can result in them trading 15% to 30% lower in price than a public traded company of similar risk. Investing in privates drives greater long-term returns.
Before the pandemic, high valuations in the public sector were making private investments more attractive. Is that still a factor? Before the pandemic, in February 2020, global equities had risen to all-time highs. Many strategists believed that prices rose so rapidly that valuations were unsustainable and stocks were due for a correction. While equity prices did fall – crash, actually – the
Ninepoint introduces a pair of precious metals funds
Ninepoint Partners has rolled out two new precious metals funds. The Ninepoint Gold and Precious Minerals Fund (GLDE/GLDE.U) invests primarily in gold, precious metals, minerals and related certificates, along with equity securities from companies involved in exploration mining, production or distribution. The Ninepoint Silver Equities Class (SLVE/ SLVE.U) focuses on equity investments in companies involved in silver exploration, mining, production and distribution, along with silver and silver certificates.
post-pandemic period has been a bit of a surprise by how quickly prices have reversed course. Despite the global economy now being in an economic recession and unemployment high, the unprecedented monetary and fiscal stimulus injected by every country that could afford to do so has propelled valuations past even prepandemic levels, so I would say there has never been a better time to get exposure to privates.
Given the likelihood of extended low interest rates, will that push more investors to private equity to try to make up some of the lost returns? We have had low interest rates for the last decade and have seen record lows and even negative rates in some countries. Traditionally, conservative investors avoid equities and gravitate to fixed income securities, but that presents a dilemma now with yields being so low. Low bond yields are forcing investors to change from the traditional notion of a 60/40 equity/fixed income split and instead seek out bond replacements. This behaviour has driven equity returns, and I believe we will see more attention to private equity and private credit. There is a false perception that private investments carry a higher degree of risk, but the range of risk is the same among private investments – high to low – as with public investments. Not all private investments are necessarily riskier than public investments, and in some cases, the opposite is certainly true. Mandeville Private Client Inc. is a member of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada and a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund.
OurCrowd brings venture capital to small investors
Global venture investment platform OurCrowd has made the fourth series of its flagship portfolio index fund, OC50, available to individual investors in Canada. With low minimum contributions and the ability to invest from registered savings accounts, the fund gives thousands of Canadian accredited investors a new access point into venture capital investing. OC50 offers investors access to vetted startups across a spectrum of stages, geographies and sectors, including growth industries like robotics and AI.
CI files prospectus for launch of Bitcoin fund
CI Global Asset Management has filed a preliminary prospectus for the CI Galaxy Bitcoin Fund, which aims to provide exposure to Bitcoin through an institutional-quality fund platform. The fund will invest directly in Bitcoin, and its holdings will be priced based on the Bloomberg Galaxy Bitcoin Index, a benchmark that measures the performance of a single Bitcoin traded in US dollars. The initial public offering will include Class A and Class F units, both of which are priced at US$10 per unit.
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EDUCATION FIRST With a background in education and administration, Greg Pollock has been able to bring that experience to Advocis and help shape the image of financial advice in Canada
MANY IN the wealth management industry know Greg Pollock for his role as president and CEO of Advocis, the Financial Advisors Association of Canada. As the largest voluntary professional membership association of financial advisors in Canada, Advocis offers services like designations, continuing education, mentorship and more. Pollock’s background makes it clear why his role at the head of the organization is a perfect fit. After obtaining a bachelor of science degree from the University of Toronto, Pollock began his career as a secondary school science teacher and became involved in school administration. “I got into professional development for secondary school teachers by working for the Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association [OECTA],” he says. “It was mainly helping teachers become more proficient at their craft.” He eventually rose to the position of general secretary for OECTA and joined the Catholic Principals’ Council of Ontario. “In those roles, I was involved with the insurance and financial matters of the association,” Pollock says. “I sat on the board of the Ontario Teachers’ Federation, which does a lot of work with the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, so I got to be involved in that.” That exposure to the financial side of education kickstarted Pollock’s transition to the financial industry. In 2008, Advocis
sought him out to lead the organization. “I saw a lot of similarities between what I had been doing, only this was directly for financial advisors,” he says. “The focus at Advocis is on professionalism and what it means for the public and advisors. There was a lot that I could draw on in my background.” Given Pollock’s background in education, the fit with Advocis seemed natural. “The
levels at Advocis. In 2009, he was asked to sit on a financial literacy task force by thenFinance Minister Jim Flaherty. The task force came out with numerous initiatives, including Financial Literacy Month in November, which Advocis remains heavily involved in. Promoting education has been a pillar of Pollock’s career – and he speaks from experience. In addition to his bachelor’s degree,
“Since I arrived [at Advocis], we have been about raising the bar for advisors. We are unhappy when an individual claims to be a financial advisor and then gets into difficult circumstances, because it is a stain on the whole industry” public isn’t always aware about the educational history of Advocis or our predecessor organization, the Life Underwriters Association of Canada, but it launched the CLU in 1926,” he says. “That is almost 100 years of education.” During his time with various educational associations in Ontario, Pollock held a government relations role, which prepared him for dealing with public officials of all
he has two master’s degrees, in education and law. “I think they are both important to financial advice – education is critical to advisors for the quality of advice,” he says. “I did my law studies in dispute resolution. I was always interested in mediation and finding a middle ground. I think I use those skills every day to help advance the association and our various parties in the industry.”
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PROFILE Name: Greg Pollock Title: President and CEO Company: Advocis Based in: Toronto Years in the industry: 12 Career highlight: Furthering Advocisâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; work toward title protection for advisors
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Key initiatives During his 12 years with Advocis, Pollock has overseen the launch of many important initiatives. One highlight has been promoting the importance of title protection. “Since I arrived, we have been about raising the bar for advisors,” he says. “We are unhappy when an individual claims to be a financial advisor and then gets into difficult circumstances, because it is a stain on the whole industry. We won’t eliminate unsavoury characters, but we can take a collective response and address the infraction in a professional way. One way we have
“We found with all the [government aid] programs rolling out, many small businesses were just trying to survive – it was challenging to understand the programs,” Pollock says. “Advocis Connect pairs them with an advisor – there is no commitment, and they can get the advice they need.” Another initiative Pollock is proud of is Advocis’ DigiCat. Led by the organization’s technology task force, DigiCat caters to the advisor of the future, helping advisors integrate technology into their businesses. Pollock says there’s much more to come from this initiative in the future.
“I think we are moving to place where advisors will have a client base of a couple hundred clients, not thousands, in order to have that direct relationship” done this is by limiting who can call themselves a financial advisor or financial planner. To our delight, the Ontario government put forth the Ontario Financial Professionals Title Protection Act, and now the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario is developing the rules.” A recent initiative that Advocis launched to aid in this cause was a Professional Financial Advisor (PFA) designation in 2019. In 2020, the program had its first batch of graduates, and now the second and third classes are underway. The pandemic has required Advocis to pivot and offer different types of programs. One of the most popular has been Coffee Talks: 30-minute segments on a variety of topics, which have been attended by hundreds of people. Another popular program was Advocis Connect, which helped Canadian small businesses by connecting them with an advisor for advice on pandemic-related issues.
People first While navigating the past year has been a challenge, Pollock says the biggest one of his career has been anticipating where the industry is heading and getting the right solutions in place. “The speed of change is so great – you have to know when to cut losses, be flexible and know when to shift.” As someone who sees many advisors entering the industry, Pollock acknowledges that it can be tough for new entrants – that’s why his advice is to focus on the person first. “Doing that will make you a successful advisor,” he says. “There is a major need for financial advice – people know it but don’t ask for help. I think we are moving to place where advisors will have a client base of a couple hundred clients, not thousands, in order to have that direct relationship. Clients want to be able to see their advisor personally – that’s why the advisors who focus on people will be the most successful.”
ADVOCIS AT A GLANCE
HEADQUARTERS Toronto, ON
YEAR FOUNDED 1906 (as the Life Underwriters Association of Canada, later renamed Advocis)
KEY SERVICES Offers designations, continuing education opportunities, publications, mentorship programs, study groups, practice development and more
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GOT AN OPINION THAT COUNTS? Email email@example.com
Saving the family business COVID-19 has made shepherding a family business through a divorce even trickier, but there are a few things advisors can do to make the process smoother, writes Nathalie Boutet THE PANDEMIC has taken a toll on both the economy and marriages across the country. One in seven small businesses is at risk of going under as a result of COVID-19 – and those numbers are likely to rise. In addition, previous norms around income prediction and business valuations no longer exist, resulting in more complex disputes. Particularly for family-owned businesses, reducing the negative impact of divorce on the family itself, as well as the company’s staff and day-to-day operations, is critical. While it’s important for divorcing couples to seek legal advice quickly, the type of lawyer chosen can impact the outcome – for better or worse. A client who chooses an aggressive family law litigator from the beginning will usually see their separating spouse do the same. This typically fuels conflict and higher costs, which can impact the stability of the business and everyone’s well-being. Instead, as early as possible in the separation process, spouses should each hire a collaborative lawyer or a single mediator for the family. A collaborative law or mediation process will help the family develop a plan around who continues to work in the business or how roles will change, as well as how to make property and support payments that take into account the business’s cash flow and development needs. Generally, unless the shares were excluded in a marriage agreement, family law in Canada allows married spouses to receive the equivalent of half the value of the business portion that was acquired during the marriage. This
can be a considerable amount that could cripple business operations. The couple can be guided on how to make this payment with other liquid assets rather than with the transfer of shares in the business to provide a clean break. If necessary, the buyout can be made in instalments over a period of time to minimize financial stress on the business. A business owner can end up spending a large amount of time on the legal process, to the detriment of the company. Going
lawyers, whose methods result in lower fees and less time spent reaching an agreement. Separations are often more successful when both spouses work together to build a vision for their newly separated lives. However, there is often confusion about how to de-couple finances, and advisors are best positioned to provide guidance and promote a respectful approach. Untangling joint accounts, including where a spouse’s pay should be deposited postseparation and who pays what expenses, is a delicate topic. Advisors should recommend that spouses continue to fund joint accounts and make all regular family payments until arriving at a longer-term arrangement. When it comes to life and health insurance, spouses should not change or remove their beneficiary designations without first obtaining legal advice, particularly since most separation agreements and court orders provide for continuation of life insurance. Separating couples can also choose to work with a single valuator to evaluate the business and provide information about income. This neutral third party can bring expertise in a balanced way, saving the cost and aggravation
“There is often confusion about how to de-couple finances, and advisors are best positioned to provide guidance and promote a respectful approach” to court requires showing up for hearings, being questioned under oath, and attending accounting and legal meetings. It also takes control out of the owner’s hands because a judge will make decisions that will impact the couple, the family and the business forever. A court might also involve itself in a business if deemed necessary. Judges have the power to order share transfers, a forced sale of the business and, in some cases, issue freezing orders. The business account can also be halted, which could prove catastrophic. The court system typically moves slowly, and the pandemic has only worsened the situation. Advisors can help mitigate the impact by working with mediators or collaborative
of each spouse retaining their own expert, which can lead to additional arguments, time and expense. Separating is confusing during normal times; it is even more so during this pandemic. Now more than ever, separating families need to minimize acrimony and try to set aside their anger towards each other and work together for everyone’s sake. Nathalie Boutet is an experienced family lawyer, accredited mediator and certified Family Enterprise Advisor, skilled at providing unique strategies and out-of-court results related to separation or divorce for high-networth families and business owners.
13/01/2021 4:23:29 AM
TOP 50 ADVISORS
ADVISORS 2021 Wealth Professional spotlights 50 Canadian advisors who made the most of a year filled with market volatility WEALTH PROFESSIONAL’S 2021 Top 50 Advisors list is a mix of familiar faces (32 of this year’s honourees also made the list in 2020) and new blood. In total, the 50 advisors who made the list this year are managing more than $18.5 billion in assets, up from last year’s total of $16 billion. They represent a wide range of experience (from two to 50-plus years in the business) and are spread across seven different provinces. This year’s list truly encompasses the breadth of individuals in the wealth management industry. On the following pages, WP talks to this year’s Top 50 Advisors about their reasons for getting into the industry, their proudest moments as advisors, how they dealt with the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and what they’re hoping to accomplish in the year ahead.
METHODOLOGY To compile the Wealth Professional Top 50 Advisors list, WP first solicited nominations from advisors, industry professionals and clients; only those advisors nominated were eligible for the list. The final list is based on each advisor’s weighted ranking in four categories: overall AUM, AUM growth, client growth (both between October 2019 and October 2020) and, new this year, number of certifications beyond a bachelor’s degree and basic securities licence. Once received, all information was verified by WP with the advisor’s compliance department. The magazine’s data and analytics team then tabulated a ranking for each advisor in each category and combined those scores to determine the advisor’s final ranking on the 2021 Top 50 Advisors list.
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Top 50 Advisors RANK
YEARS IN THE INDUSTRY
TOTAL NUMBER OF CLIENTS
Tétrault Wealth Advisory Group
Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management
Khajadourian Wealth Management
Équipe Dalpé Milette
Degelman Pruden Group
Wellington-Altus Private Wealth
Popowich Karmali Advisory Group
CIBC Wood Gundy
Polsinelli Financial Advisory Group
Scotia Wealth Management
Gerald L. Goertsen
De Thomas Wealth Management
De Thomas Wealth Management
The Hunter Financial Group
Scotia Wealth Management
MLD Wealth Management Group
Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management
CIBC Wood Gundy
CIBC Wood Gundy
JMRD Watson Wealth Team
National Bank Financial
Nour Private Wealth
Nour Private Wealth
CIC Financial Group
Aligned Capital Partners
Martin Frenette and Associates
CI Assante Capital Management
Hemmett Anseeuw & Associates
Harbourfront Wealth Management
The Mahrt Investment Group
Wellington-Altus Private Wealth
Green Private Wealth Counsel
Harbourfront Wealth Management
Francis Gingras Roy
Hemmett Anseeuw & Associates
Harbourfront Wealth Management
Oakwater Wealth Counsel
Harbourfront Wealth Management
The Wolf on Bay Street
Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management
Alexandra Horwood & Partners
Westmount Wealth Group
HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities
Crowe Private Wealth
Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management
White LeBlanc Wealth Planners
HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities
Jim Durnin, CFP
CI Assante Wealth Management
PWM Private Wealth Counsel
Hollis Wealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities
William Frenn Wealth Management
Manulife Securities Inc.
White LeBlanc Wealth Planners
HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities
The CM Group
CIBC Wood Gundy
Richie Feindel Wealth Management
Stephen H. Ross
Ross & Hudson Advisory Group
Scotia Wealth Management
Insightful Wealth Group
Total Wealth Management Group
HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities
The Kratz Group at CIBC Private Wealth
CIBC Wood Gundy
The McClelland Financial Group
CI Assante Capital Management
Mauro Private Wealth Management
Wellington-Altus Private Wealth
West Vancouver, BC
The Gill Group
Scotia Wealth Management
White Rock, BC
Pointe Claire, QC
HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities
Red Deer, AB
Gilman Deters Private Wealth
Harbourfront Wealth Management
West Vancouver, BC
Goldstein Financial Consultants
Goldstein Financial Investments
Gilman Deters Private Wealth
Harbourfront Wealth Management
*Between October 31, 2019 and October 31, 2020 **2020 AUM total reflects clients with assets at Aligned Capital Partners ($269.5 million) and CIC Financial ($11 million)
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TOP 50 ADVISORS
50 THOMAS GILMAN Practice: Gilman Deters Private Wealth Firm: Harbourfront Wealth Management Location: Victoria, BC
Thomas Gilman earns the number 50 spot on this year’s list thanks to $30 million in AUM growth over the last year. Gilman has always been motivated by a desire to educate others and help them develop the financial skills he believes many are lacking. “As a young adult, I felt grossly unprepared to manage the financial decisions life threw at me,” he says. “I remember my
mother sitting at the dining room table, often late into the evening, with a large ledger book, tracking all the family finances. I always assumed that she must have learned those skills from school. It wasn’t until years later that I realized the public school system had failed to provide me the skills for such a crucial component of life. I wanted to learn about finance, but more importantly, I wanted to spread that knowledge and use it to help others. As a result, our approach as advisors and portfolio managers is very educational. We strive to demystify what many people feel is very complex and intimidating subject matter.”
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Practice: Goldstein Financial Consultants
Practice: Gilman Deters Private Wealth
Firm: Goldstein Financial Investments
Firm: Harbourfront Wealth Management
Location: Toronto, ON
Sonny Goldstein is the most senior member of this year’s Top 50 Advisors list, having spent 54 years in the industry. Goldstein says he originally got into wealth management when he was approached to sell life insurance. More than five decades later, he has seen both the industry and his own role evolve. Goldstein managed to continue growing his practice in 2020, adding $15 million in AUM to bring him over the $200 million mark. His tenure in the industry brings about a different kind of challenge when it comes to growth. “I want to add 40 new clients in the coming year,” he says. “Sadly, I lose 10 to 15 [clients] through deaths, as I have a large number of retired clients, many 75 years of age and older.” Throughout his five-decade-plus career, Goldstein has had many highlights, but the one that stands out is the opportunity he’s had to give back. “My proudest moment was creating a charitable foundation, Care For Kids (Toronto), which has since raised over $1.25 million and donated $600,000 to the PACT team at SickKids hospital.”
Location: West Vancouver, BC
David Gilman saw his AUM grow by nearly $30 million in 2020 as he increased his client base to 348. Now he’s hoping to grow even more. “My primary goals for the coming year are to continue to grow our assets under administration beyond $200 million in 2021, to find a strategic partner to join our practice and to continue to increase the average client size to greater than $500,000 per client,” he says. Coming up on his 20th year in the industry, Gilman says he was originally looking for a way to join the financial industry after university in a consulting or advisory role, where he could focus on building relationships with small businesses and professionals. Now that he’s accomplished that, he has his sights set on helping his firm expand. “I still see myself as an advisor in 10 years,” he says. “However, I see myself in a management role at my practice and doing less face-to-face client interaction.”
JOHN RATHWELL Practice: Rathwell Financial Firm: HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities Location: Red Deer, AB
John Rathwell, a 33-year industry veteran, had a good year in 2020, crossing the $200 million AUM mark. Despite the pandemic, Rathwell says he and his team continued to provide the same level of service they always do. “We worked right through it, and we have added numerous clients,” he says. “It helps being in the office every day – then we can support our clients and be there for them. This has enabled us to grow our AUM by $18 million in less than a year.” While Rathwell has begun fostering the next generation of his business – both of his children are advisors in his practice, and he hopes to continue mentoring them and watching as they strengthen the relationships he has built – he does still have a goal for himself. “I want to become a cross-border specialist,” he says. “There seems to be a great need for someone to hold this designation in our province.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS 46
JOSEPH BAKISH Practice: Bakish Wealth Firm: Richardson Wealth Location: Pointe Claire, QC
After a one-year hiatus, Joseph Bakish returns to WP’s Top 50 Advisors list in 2021 after growing his AUM by $25 million and adding 20 new clients. Bakish says his goals for the coming year are all about providing more options for his clients, including alternatives and responsible investing. “My goal is to continue to work towards our clients’ best interests by delivering diversified, unique opportunities to invest in high-quality, potentially lucrative investment opportunities that are non-correlated to stock and bond markets,” he says. “I will also be focusing strongly on impact investing.” For Bakish, the pandemic has strengthened his commitment to working toward some of those goals. “Oddly, COVID has been an opportunity to challenge us to think outside the box,” he says, “and our team is grateful for the lessons we will continue to apply once the pandemic has subsided.”
KARISA SCHAITEL Practice: Nicola Wealth Firm: Nicola Wealth Location: Vancouver, BC
In just her second year as an advisor, Karisa Schaitel has rocketed into the number 45 spot on the Top 50 Advisors list after building a book worth $155 million. A 17-year financial industry veteran, Schaitel holds several designations, including CPA, CA, CMA and CFP. She says her motivation for entering the industry was twofold. “In high school, I took a bookkeeping class as an elective, and I found I really enjoyed it,” she says. “I loved that the math made sense. Math is like a big puzzle, and it has a set of rules and laws that you must follow, and you can use your knowledge of those concepts to solve more and more complex things. What further attracted me to the industry was that it gave me the ability to use critical thinking to problem-solve. I love to be able to look at a problem, whether planning or investing, and come up with a practical plan to solve it.”
SATVIR GILL Practice: The Gill Group Firm: Scotia Wealth Management Location: White Rock, BC
Satvir Gill has been interested in the financial industry since childhood and jumped at the chance to begin working in it at just 19 years old. Now, after a solid year in which he crossed the $250 million AUM mark, Gill takes the number 44 spot on the WP Top 50 Advisors list. Having made a lifelong study of markets, business and wealth creation, Gill and his team have developed a comfort in dealing with clients’ finances. Gill’s approach encompasses economic, technical and fundamental analysis, and he is especially experienced in advising retail, institutional and non-profit organizations. Gill says that in addition to bringing on six new households in 2021, his goal is to “use our generational wealth offering to help more families.” While he can’t pinpoint one specific career highlight, he says every time he “puts together and implements a full plan for families is a very proud moment.”
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Practice: Mauro Private Wealth Management Firm: Wellington-Altus Private Wealth Location: West Vancouver, BC
One of the most tenured advisors among this year’s Top 50, Frank Mauro is in his 36th year in the business. He had a consistent year in 2020, maintaining his AUM and client level. A co-founder of Wellington-Altus, Mauro was part of the company’s first incarnation as Wellington West and was eager to give it another go when creating Wellington-Altus in 2017. “We decided to strike out one more time, with the aim of becoming the premier private wealth management firm in the country,” Mauro told WP in a 2020 interview. Today, Wellington-Altus continues to add to its advisor network and AUM. While Mauro says he’s not sure when retirement will come, the fact that Wellington-Altus has built a great team gives him confidence that the transition will be as smooth as possible.
ROB MCCLELLAND Practice: The McClelland Financial Group Firm: CI Assante Capital Management Location: Thornhill, ON
Rob McClelland and his team took home silver at the 2020 Wealth Professional Awards for Advisory Team of the Year (10 Staff or More) and Digital Innovator of the Year. Yet for McClelland, awards pale in comparison to hearing that he’s made a difference for his clients. “One of my proudest professional moments came when a client I had been advising for the last nine years told me how pleased he was that he had me as his financial advisor,” he says. “This client had months to live and was very comfortable knowing that his wife and family’s financial future was in good hands.” McClelland’s goal in 2020 was to make sure his team could adapt and maintain strong relationships with clients who were struggling with the uncertainties of the market. For 2021, his primary objective is “to continue to maximize and streamline our operations and continue to grow to help as many new clients as possible to have a solid plan and advisor, securing their financial and personal success.”
BRENT THOMSON Practice: Nicola Wealth Firm: Nicola Wealth Location: Kelowna, BC
One of seven members of the Top 50 Advisors list from Nicola Wealth, Brent Thomson lands at number 41 after adding $25 million in AUM to his practice in 2020, bringing his total to $251 million. He also increased his total clients to 98. Since joining Nicola in 1997, Thomson has established a strong presence for the firm in Kelowna and works very closely with clients in the Okanagan. His goal for the year ahead is to continue expanding Nicola Wealth’s presence in Kelowna.
LUKE KRATZ Practice: The Kratz Group at CIBC Private Wealth Firm: CIBC Wood Gundy Location: Victoria, BC
After appearing on WP’s first five Top 50 Advisors lists, Luke Kratz returns in 2021 after a two-year hiatus. Kratz attended university in San Diego and became an advisor in the US before returning to Canada in 2008 and building his practice from scratch. He managed to grow his AUM in 2020 thanks in part to how he quickly adapted to the new environment. “Immediately, I put on a webinar about the markets and economic impact,” he says, “and then held a webinar every 30 days with a COVID theme and a guest.” Kratz’s efforts to keep his clients informed saw him bring in everyone from a local health expert to a representative from the Better Business Bureau and an estate planning expert. In addition, Kratz says, “I have been doing virtual meetings since 2014 with some clients, so I am comfortable with the platform.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS NADER HAMID
Practice: Total Wealth Management Group Firm: HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities Location: Pointe-Claire, QC
Nader Hamid saw a modest AUM gain in 2020, despite proactively reducing his total number of clients. “At TWM Group, we’re continually working to be the best private wealth management service in Canada,” he explains. “With this mission in mind, we reduced our client base last year, transferring close to 65 relationships, accounting for around $20 million in AUM, to advisors who were better suited to service them. In doing so, our team was able to focus on a smaller number of high-net-worth clients, providing them with a broader range of personalized services. This strategy allowed us to grow our AUM despite reducing our client base.” In addition, Hamid and his growing team have been focusing on new areas of financial management for their clients. “Our team has continued to grow, becoming more and more multi-disciplinary,” he says. “For the coming year, we are focusing on optimizing our operations, mainly by strengthening our use of technology to render our clients the full benefits of an increasingly sophisticated practice.”
ETHAN ASTANEH Practice: Nicola Wealth Firm: Nicola Wealth Location: Vancouver, BC
Ethan Astaneh had one of the largest jumps in AUM of any of the Top 50 Advisors over the course of the last year, growing his book from $36 million to $144 million while also nearly doubling his clients. For Astaneh, it was a project he worked on in university that cemented his desire to become an advisor. “In my undergraduate studies, I helped a professor design a product for an investment bank,” he says. “After completing my work, I realized what I had done – I helped a massive financial institution create a product that is designed for the house to win first and the client to win second, if at all. I pivoted from financial engineering to financial advisory immediately because I wanted to educate individuals.” As an advisor, Astaneh takes a disciplined approach to wealth management, which he says helped him in dealing with the pandemic. “As much as the commute to work seems like time lost, it contributes to productivity by helping activate the brain and prepare for productivity,” he says. “In the same way an athlete stretches their body before the performance, we must stretch our minds, and I find the routines of non-COVID life are so deeply ingrained in us that they actually help our efficiency, not hurt it.”
SOPHIA ITO Practice: Nicola Wealth Firm: Nicola Wealth Location: Vancouver, BC
The top female advisor on last year’s Top 50 Advisors list is back again in 2021, coming in at number 37. While Sophia Ito scaled back her total clients and AUM in 2021, she still has the seventh largest book among the Top 50. Ito says she was attracted to the industry because she had “an innate interest in problemsolving, the growing complexity of the wealth management industry and the effects it’s had on family wealth.” With the high volume of information available to investors today, Ito felt that high-net-worth families were getting lost in the complexities of everything from tax planning to investment options. She’s built her business around helping those families and says she wants to “focus on ensuring clients are informed of the changes in the investment and wealth management landscape that directly affect them.” When it came to handling the challenges of 2020, Ito says her greatest asset was her positive outlook. “I’ve found that staying optimistic and being available for my clients has been vital,” she says. “One positive that has come from this situation is the absence of external distractions. This has allowed time for more meaningful – virtual – connections with my clients, colleagues and, of course, my family.”
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36 CHRISTINE LALIBERTÉ Practice: Insightful Wealth Group Firm: Manulife Securities Location: Surrey, BC
Christine LaLiberté has come a long way since she joined the financial industry as a bank teller at the age of 19. She went on to work for an MFDA and then an IIROC advisor before launching her own business with zero assets in 1999. Twenty-one years later, LaLiberté has been able to build a book worth $230 million.
“Over the years, I have recognized the need for overall wealth management and removing the focus of just managing the assets,” she says. “This is becoming more important with all the changes going on in the world, so continuing to be the financial wealth management coach for my clients and their families to provide fundamentally better intergenerational wealth habits and management is key. I have not been focusing on growing the business for many years – it has continued to occur because of the advice, support and service our team provides.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS STEPHEN H. ROSS Practice: Ross & Hudson Advisory Group Firm: Scotia Wealth Management Location: Calgary, AB
After graduating from university during the 1982 Alberta recession, Stephen Ross responded to a job ad for a broker position at Richardson Greenshields. “The ad stated ‘no experience required.’ I figured I qualified based on that requirement, so I applied,” he says. “I had an interview and beat out 49 other people for the job.” The rest, as they say, is history; Ross has been in the industry just shy of 40 years and continues to add to his AUM and client base. The past year proved to be a challenging one for Ross, who says the pandemic will impact any investment decisions going forward. “The emotional effects from COVID are continuing and will still dominate any decision into 2021,” he says. “The job is to continue to be the gatekeeper for my clients, who confuse an emotional response with a logical course of action to keep them on track. One day, COVID will be over, but the same principles of prudent planning and investing will remain. Clients will need us more than ever to keep them on track.”
KYLE RICHIE Practice: Richie Feindel Wealth Management Firm: Richardson Wealth Location: Toronto, ON
Kyle Richie, 2019’s number-one advisor, had a big year in 2020, moving his practice to Richardson Wealth. In addition, he took home the silver award for Canadian Advisor of the Year at the Wealth Professional Awards. He also released a book in November, co-authored with his partner, Andrew Feindel. Titled Kickstart Your Corporation: The Incorporated Professional’s Financial Planning Coach, the book sold 2,700 copies in its first month. Even with everything else going on, Richie maintained his place among the Top 50, landing at number 34 this year. “Being named top advisor on the Wealth Professional Top 50 list two years ago was definitely up there on my career highlights,” he says.
COLIN ANDREWS Practice: The CM Group Firm: CIBC Wood Gundy Location: Calgary, AB
A 20-year industry veteran, Colin Andrews saw his numbers remain unchanged over the last year and was rewarded for that consistency – plus an impressive book of business worth $500 million in AUM – with the number 33 spot on the Top 50 Advisors list. Like many others, Andrews was inspired to join the investment industry after participating in a stock market challenge in grade school. Now, he says his goal is to “raise the level of experience in both the client and advisor area by mentoring other advisors in our firm and creating standardized practices focused on the end user.” This past year was a challenge for many, but for Andrews, it was especially difficult – and rewarding. “Just prior to the global crisis, I acquired a book of business that was the largest holder of credit default swap products in the country,” he says. “That was the hardest and most rewarding experience to help clients get to a better place emotionally and financially.”
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DAN LEBLANC Practice: White LeBlanc Wealth Planners Firm: HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities Location: Dartmouth, NS
Returning to the Top 50 in 2021, Dan LeBlanc continued to see growth in both his AUM and total clients over the past year. LeBlanc was originally inspired to enter the wealth management industry by his passion for finance and desire to help people. “I was drawn to dealing with personal and business finance at a young age,” he says. “From helping my father balance his books in my teenage years to an early mindset ingrained by my father to ‘save for a rainy day,’ wealth management was a natural fit. We have been able to genuinely help people in so many ways over my career, and that is truly gratifying.” Along with his partner, Colin White, LeBlanc is looking to further develop their team and service offering. “We set a goal of building the strongest possible team to offer high-quality independent wealth management to Canadians and are seeing it materialize,” he says. “I feel very strongly that we have the best people to deliver on this for our clients.”
Practice: William Frenn Wealth Management Firm: Manulife Securities Location: Dorval, QC
Practice: PWM Private Wealth Counsel Firm: Hollis Wealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities Location: Saskatoon, SK
After making his debut on the WP Top 50 Advisors list in 2019, William Frenn is back at number 31 for 2021. Originally trained as a civil engineer, Frenn was always fascinated by financial markets, but it wasn’t until he met his mentor at Manulife that he figured out how to turn that passion into a career. Now, eight years into his tenure as an advisor, Frenn continues to grow. He added $56 million to his AUM in 2020, leaving him just shy of $200 million. Yet it isn’t his own growth that Frenn is most proud of. “Watching advisors I mentored grow their practice and receive recognition from clients they helped is my greatest achievement,” he says. Already in possession of an MBA and CFP, Frenn has his sights set on portfolio management. In 2021, he hopes to “complete my CIM designation, begin offering discretionary portfolio management and continue to grow our team of professionals.”
Kevin Hegedus is making his fifth appearance on the Top 50 Advisors list in 2021. While the 29-year industry veteran admits that 2020 was one of the more challenging years he’s witnessed, he says his goals remain the same. “My long-term goal remains to continue advising,” he says. “With the positive changes we have made in our business and with the team that we have built, I find this business rewarding on many levels.” In addition to ramping up safety protocols during COVID-19, PWM implemented digital forms of communication with clients to provide market commentary and portfolio updates. “Our portfolio models were well positioned prior to the pandemic,” Hegedus says. “We’ve introduced a number of alternative investment strategies over the past few years, which helped to protect our portfolios by avoiding the majority of the market decline.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS
29 JIM DURNIN Practice: Jim Durnin, CFP Firm: CI Assante Wealth Management Location: Calgary, AB
After beginning his career in the computer industry, Jim Durnin eventually turned his hobby for investing into a full-time job. Twenty-six years later, he hasn’t looked back. Durnin had another solid year in 2020, growing both his AUM and his team. “My team and I completed the build-out of new office space in 2020,” he says. “This has provided us with quality space to expand our client service capabilities. We started this process by hiring one additional team member during the pandemic.
Superior client service has been a primary goal of mine since the inception of my practice. Over the next 12 months, my plan is to continue to expand my team to allow us to continue to deliver top-notch client service, professional investment management services and financial planning services to our existing clients and any potential clients.” Durnin still leverages his experience from the computer industry to provide his team with tools that help them manage clients over the long term. “My team and I have developed and enhanced some excellent proprietary investment tools and models over the last 26 years,” he says. “It is important that we continue to evolve and grow so we can continue to deliver bestin-class services to our clients.”
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COLIN WHITE Practice: White LeBlanc Wealth Planners Firm: HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities Location: Dartmouth, NS
Making his third consecutive appearance on the Top 50 Advisors list, Colin White saw his AUM surpass $200 million in 2020. Looking forward, the 28-year industry veteran plans to stick with what’s working. “My primary goal for each year, since I began in the industry, has remained unchanged,” he says. “It’s to work towards finding the most effective ways to improve my clients’ financial situation.” White and partner Dan LeBlanc were able to do that in 2020 by quickly adapting to the new work environment, having already laid the foundation to conduct business across multiple locations around the country. “Our business already works very effectively in a predominantly cloud-based environment,” White says. “We are able to meet remotely with colleagues and clients and have been doing so for some time. The shift to a working-from-home model, as it was/is required, was pretty straightforward for us.”
LORENZO PEDERZANI Practice: Westmount Wealth Group Firm: HollisWealth, a division of Industrial Alliance Securities Location: Vancouver, BC
Lorenzo Pederzani debuts on the Top 50 Advisors list in 2021 after a strong year in which he grew his AUM by more than $57 million. Pederzani says he was originally encouraged to join the industry by a friend; 16 years and two firms later, their offices are now next to each other. For Pederzani, the past decade and a half has been filled with significant achievements. “Passing my last CFA exam in 2012, after five years and 2,426 hours of study, was an accomplishment,” he says. “Also, for someone who didn’t really even understand mutual funds before I joined the industry in 2004, it was a tall order to grow a business from scratch while studying for this difficult exam, getting my CFP and insurance licence during that time as well.” Now Pederzani has his sights set on continuing to grow his business. For 2021, he says his goal is to improve his practice’s digital marketing and client acquisition.
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TOP 50 ADVISORS DARCIE CROWE
Practice: Crowe Private Wealth Firm: Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management Location: Vancouver, BC
Darcie Crowe won big at the 2020 Wealth Professional Awards, taking the top honours for Female Trailblazer of the Year and Advisor of the Year – Alternative Investments. In 2021, Crowe is looking to use her recognition as an expert in alternatives to keep building her practice. “I would like to continue to grow my business while maintaining a low household count to offer the extensive service our team provides clients,” she says. “I am also dedicated to continuing to educate clients on the merits of including alternative investments within their portfolios.”
ALEXANDRA HORWOOD Practice: Alexandra Horwood & Partners Firm: Richardson Wealth Location: Toronto, ON
Making her fifth consecutive appearance among the Top 50 Advisors, Alexandra Horwood traces her passion for wealth management to her university days. “My experience tutoring statistics in university gave me a love of teaching,” she says. “My sales experience, passion for entrepreneurship, and my genuine interest in caring for and helping people are all a perfect complement to the wealth management business.” As one of the younger advisors on this year’s list, Horwood says her generation’s affinity for technology helped her practice cope with the challenges of the pandemic. “Being a millennial, my team has always been tech-savvy and kept thorough electronic filing systems,” she says. “We have a great foundation and system to manage our work remotely. I spent the entire summer virtually meeting with and calling each of my valued clients on rotation to ensure they were all comfortable and that I was there for them.”
WOLFGANG KLEIN Practice: The Wolf on Bay Street Firm: Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management Location: Toronto, ON
Another mainstay on the Top 50 Advisors list, Wolfgang Klein returns for the eighth time in 2021. The Wolf on Bay Street showed no signs of slowing down in 2020, adding to both his AUM and client base. Despite the volatility of the past year, Klein says his goals haven’t changed. “My main objective, regardless of the year, is to help my clients reach their financial goals,” he says. “My job is to keep my clients on track, minimize their taxes and ensure money is put aside each year until they retire – and sometimes beyond retirement. The uncertainty of events such as the COVID-19 pandemic has shown the importance of having a plan for all eventualities. I understand the need to be prepared and resilient because, as we have all witnessed, things can change in the blink of an eye.”
WES ASHTON Practice: Oakwater Wealth Counsel Firm: Harbourfront Wealth Management Location: Vancouver, BC
Coming in at the number 23 spot on this year’s list is Vancouver advisor Wes Ashton, who says he was drawn to wealth management by the opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives. “The financial industry provided me the opportunity to combine my passion for people and building relationships along with my knowledge of numbers,” he says. Now, after a nearly 30-year career, Ashton says he can’t see himself doing anything else. “The success rate of individuals getting into the advisory industry is low, so early in my career, it was about survival and building for the future,” he says. “Now it’s come full circle, and all the hard work has paid off. Being in a situation where individuals have trusted me to counsel their families is both rewarding and humbling. As clients go through various stages of life, the focus changes on what’s important to them. Supporting a family through a health or family tragedy – death of a loved one, etc. – and being a pillar of strength for them at a low point is often overlooked in what we do. These are the moments that stand out, and you realize that our responsibility is greater than just portfolio returns.”
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22 KEVIN ANSEEUW Practice: Hemmett Anseeuw & Associates Firm: Harbourfront Wealth Management Location: Winnipeg, MB
Kevin Anseeuw, who has had a 20-plus-year career as a successful advisor, knew from a young age that he wanted to help people succeed. He wanted to be a part of creating the selfreliance, financial confidence and prosperity of others. “Throughout my career, I have been able to help people build their net worth, tax plan and retire in comfort – all the things that enable them to do the things they want to do in life,” he says. This drive to enrich the lives of others is also apparent in his
personal life. Anseeuw spends much of his spare time serving on the Entrepreneurs Organization board. This organization helps business owners achieve their full potential by establishing leadership support networks and peer-to-peer learning. Anseeuw says his proudest moments have been watching financial plans come to fruition. “My clients are informed and have the confidence to make strategic financial decisions that impact the trajectory of their lives,” he says. “Whether it be to retire, plan their estate, buy a business or invest in real estate, they are well positioned to do so. Years later, they often come back and thank us for providing them the ability to enjoy their lives today while preparing for tomorrow. These are my proudest moments: seeing clients live their best life.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS FRANCIS GINGRAS ROY Practice: Manulife Securities Firm: Manulife Securities Location: Dorval, QC
Francis Gingras Roy might only be in his fifth year in the industry, but after adding $65 million to his AUM in 2020 to bring it over the $200 million threshold, he’s becoming a rising star. In addition to that growth, Roy says the past year was transformative for him and his team due to their transition from a commission-based to a fee-based model. For 2021, Roy has his sights set on expanding his presence. “My goal for the coming year is opening a new office in Quebec City and recruiting a whole new team of investment advisors,” he says.
Practice: Green Private Wealth Counsel Firm: Harbourfront Wealth Management Location: Woodstock, ON
Practice: The Mahrt Investment Group Firm: Wellington-Altus Private Wealth Location: Victoria, BC
Paul Green achieved a milestone in 2020, surpassing the $200 million mark in AUM. Tracing his interest in the industry to a fascination with the stock market at a young age, Green was hooked by the idea of participating in the growth of great companies without lifting a finger. Once he was formally educated in finance, he quickly saw the value in holistic financial planning and never looked back after entering the business in 1992. In addition to providing holistic services for his clients, Green says his goals for the year ahead include sharing his own expertise and expanding his practice. “I want to continue to mentor younger advisors and build the succession plan for the firm to continue assisting families to realize their financial goals/freedom,” he says. “Also, building our Burlington office with new clients and $15 million in new assets.”
JASON NICOLA Practice: Nicola Wealth Firm: Nicola Wealth Location: Vancouver, BC
Jason Nicola returns to the Top 50 Advisors list for the second year in a row, this time in the number 19 spot. Nicola continued to grow his practice in 2020, surpassing the $400 million AUM mark. Originally inspired to join the industry after witnessing the impactful work of his father (Nicola wealth founder John Nicola), Nicola was compelled to make the same connections with his clients. Now, 11 years into his career, Nicola is forging his own name in the industry. He considers himself a “people person” with a passion for analysis and problem-solving, and he prides himself on developing strong, valued relationships with his clients and working with them to achieve their short- and long-term financial goals with peace of mind. Before becoming an advisor, Nicola earned a degree in theatre, and he says that experience helps him by giving him insight into human emotion, allowing him to coach the behaviours of his clients.
A 35-year industry veteran, Roderick Mahrt returns to the Top 50 Advisors list in 2021 thanks to steady all-round growth over the past year. Mahrt, who spent time early in his career as an executive assistant to a BC cabinet minister, says that was where he first developed an interest in wealth management. “I was shown my first investment prospectus and was instantly fascinated,” he says. “I knew that I wanted to shift away from the political arena and move into the investment industry. It was one of the most significant and best career decisions of my life. What has motivated me to stay in the industry is the great relationships I have developed with our clients and the people I work with.” Those relationships are a considerable source of pride for Mahrt, given that most of his clients followed him when he moved to Wellington-Altus in 2018. “I was profoundly grateful that over 95% of our clients transitioned with us,” he says. “My proudest professional moments come when I take clients through thresholds of unrealized gains where they can see the outcome of our process and strategy with their own eyes. Seeing clients use these gains to fund their long-term goals is what fulfills me in this industry.”
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KELLY HEMMETT Practice: Hemmett Anseeuw & Associates Firm: Harbourfront Wealth Management Location: Winnipeg, MB
Making his second appearance among the Top 50 Advisors, Kelly Hemmett says his place on the list is one of his career highlights. Twenty-nine years into his career, Hemmett fully recognizes the value that advisors can bring to their clients, especially in increasingly difficult and complicated times. “Our experience and character are what clients need now more than ever,” he says. “I feel it is our duty to be there for them going forward. We want to follow through on the plans we have created and been managing, often through tough times,
for many years. I feel that I need to be continuously working for them to feel satisfied with my own day-to-day life.” Six years ago, Hemmett and partner Kevin Anseeuw moved their practice to Harbourfront Wealth Management so they could offer independent advice. They took a chance in doing so, but they’re happy with the outcome. “Making this break to move to a true independent was both challenging and a bit scary,” Hemmett says. “It came with significant financial losses to start. We are now six years in and have more than tripled our assets under administration. To have received this national recognition is humbling and yet vindicates our decision to put our clients’ needs ahead of our own. I am so very proud that my entire team decided to make this leap with me, and we have grown exponentially since doing it.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS MARTIN FRENETTE
Practice: Martin Frenette and Associates Firm: CI Assante Capital Management Location: Montreal, QC
Martin Frenette is making his debut on the Top 50 Advisors list this year. The 18-year industry veteran says what makes his practice unique is his integrated wealth management approach. Serving as his clients’ principal point of contact, Frenette coordinates all of their financial affairs, drawing on the expertise of a team of specialists. Frenette had a good year in 2020, increasing his AUM by close to $30 million to sit just shy of $300 million in total. He continues to service a high number of clients (currently 1,000) and holds both an MBA and CFP.
BRAD JARDINE Practice: CIC Financial Group Firm: Aligned Capital Partners Location: Ancaster, ON
Brad Jardine is one of the longest-serving advisors on this year’s Top 50 Advisors list, with 35 years of experience in the industry. He had another solid year in 2020, growing both his AUM and client base. “Although for many at this juncture, retirement may be likely, I still enjoy the challenges of helping others realize their financial goals,” Jardine says. “Each client is unique, and I have yet to run out of steam.” While Jardine says the pandemic was different than any other crisis he’s seen before, managing clients through market volatility has been part of his role for many years. “We found the key for managing client portfolios and expectations is to help them filter through the noise and remind them that, for the most part, these are not 30-day or 30-week funds, but 30 years,” he says. “There will be peaks and valleys, but through the years, patience has typically prevailed, and we are in it together.”
ELIE NOUR Practice: Nour Private Wealth Firm: Nour Private Wealth Location: Oakville, ON
Elie Nour has appeared on all eight of Wealth Professional’s annual Top 50 Advisors lists. That’s no small feat, but considering what Nour has been able to accomplish since taking his practice independent just over two years ago, it’s not surprising. Nour Private Wealth now has 80 employees and four locations throughout Ontario and Quebec. One of the keys to Nour’s success has been the importance he places on education. “It is a big responsibility to manage people’s money, and advisors have the responsibility to go beyond their clients’ expectations and become the best in their field,” he told WP in a 2020 interview. Looking ahead, Nour says he’d like to grow his AUM to $500 million. While he hopes to accomplish this by the end of 2021, he also sees himself working as an advisor for the rest of his life – so it’s only a matter of time before he surpasses that goal.
RUSSELL FEENSTRA Practice: Nicola Wealth Firm: Nicola Wealth Location: Vancouver, BC
Just eight years into his career as an advisor, Russell Feenstra is making his debut on the Top 50 Advisors list after nearly doubling his book size in 2020. Feenstra says his interest in wealth management came from a combination of market interest and a desire to help people. Now he’s looking to “continue to expand my skill set in working with highnet-worth professionals and business owners, complete my CLU designation, and continue to grow my practice and help mentor others within the firm.” Already in possession of a CFP and CIM, Feenstra is a big believer in continuing education. He says the biggest highlights of his career so far have been those that positively impact his clients. “My proudest professional moments would be seeing countless clients transition comfortably into retirement and knowing that I played a role in making that happen,” he says.
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REG JACKSON Practice: JMRD Watson Wealth Team Firm: National Bank Financial Location: London, ON
The past year was a busy one for Reg Jackson and his JMRD team as they merged their practice with Watson Wealth Management to create a larger firm of 18 experts. The new team focuses on providing clients with all of the wealth management services they need. Even while overseeing the expansion, Jackson was able to continue to grow his own book, adding just over $26 million to his AUM while maintaining his client totals. While he’s the one who made the Top 50, Jackson says his team’s accomplishments have been his proudest moments. “By far, my proudest professional moment was being recognized as the national winner of the Wealth Management Excellence Award at National Bank Financial on more than one occasion,” he says. “The main reason is that the entire JMRD Watson was the recipient of this award, which more than validates what we have been building over the past two decades. This award recognizes teams that provide a service offering that goes well beyond investment management to include all areas of a family’s wealth plan.”
Practice: CIBC Wood Gundy Firm: CIBC Wood Gundy Location: Toronto, ON
Joel Carriere had the third largest growth in AUM of this year’s Top 50 honourees at a whopping $263 million, landing him at number 11 on the list. But things weren’t always this way for Carriere. “I was raised in a small town by a single parent, and we did not have any financial resources,” he says. “I decided to become a financial advisor in order to understand finances with the goal of getting myself out of poverty.” Since then, Carriere has gone on to earn multiple certifications, helping to cement his expertise in the field. Yet he’s never forgotten where he came from. “My proudest moment wasn’t necessarily a professional success,” he says. “I have done very well financially since entering this industry, and the first item I bought was an air conditioner for my mom after I got my first pay cheque. That felt good, but my proudest moment was when I was able to buy her a house – with central AC – and then pay it off for her so she didn’t have to worry about money ever again.”
CHAD LARSON Practice: MLD Wealth Management Group Firm: Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management Location: Calgary, AB
Named Wealth Professional’s number-one advisor in 2018, Chad Larson remains near the top of the list for 2021. Larson has continued to grow his business and now has $710 million worth of assets under management, the fourth largest total of any of this year’s Top 50 Advisors. He attributes the growth to the countless hours he devoted to helping his clients through the pandemic. “This was a year for the record books,” he says. “When the volatility struck, I worked nearly around the clock on client portfolios to weather the storm and for months after. The opportunities to take advantage of mispricing in the market were once in a career. This was the Super Bowl of financial advice, and we won.” While navigating the pandemic is undoubtedly a highlight for Larson, he says it’s tough to pinpoint one moment as his proudest. “I wouldn’t highlight one moment, but multiple,” he says. “Anytime we get inbound feedback and praise from our client families that we have provided them peace of mind and clarity to their situation are the moments that make this career so special.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS BART HUNTER Practice: The Hunter Financial Group Firm: Scotia Wealth Management Location: Saskatoon, SK
While advisors come from a range of different backgrounds, Bart Hunter’s might be the most unique. A former Memorial Cup champion and professional hockey player, he began taking business courses while playing hockey, which made the transition to wealth management an easy one. Almost 30 years later, Hunter hasn’t looked back. “I have always enjoyed people, and this industry is all about relationships,” he says. “It’s a great way to help people get what they want in life and, at the same time, allows me to make a meaningful impact.” Hunter takes a full-service planning approach and has developed a five-step Value 360° Program to simplify the lives of his clients. “This program helps to coordinate, design, implement and manage an integrated wealth strategy that ensures our clients’ affairs operate in a seamless manner,” he says.
GERALD GOERTSEN Practice: De Thomas Wealth Management Firm: De Thomas Wealth Management Location: Kelowna, BC
Gerald Goertsen is a regular fixture on the Top 50 Advisors list, mainly due to his ability to help a large number of clients – something that could have turned into a huge challenge in 2020’s tumultuous environment. However, Goertsen reports that he was able to adjust to the situation by quickly taking his practice virtual to protect staff and clients, relying on technology to continue providing clients with top-notch service. A desire to help people understand their finances is what originally drew Goertsen to the industry almost 20 years ago – and what will likely keep him here for another 20. “I wanted to help people improve their financial literacy and improve their opportunities to create wealth,” he says. “My proudest moments are when I get to show clients that they have surpassed their goals and they need to spend more money.”
JASON POLSINELLI Practice: Polsinelli Financial Advisory Group Firm: Scotia Wealth Management Location: Vaughan, ON
Jason Polsinelli had the second highest AUM growth among this year’s Top 50, increasing his assets by nearly $360 million to bring his total AUM to over half a billion. However, he says that’s just the beginning, as he’s now eyeing the $1 billion mark as a goal. “This year was our proudest professional moment,” Polsinelli says. “We were involved in a lot of advisory successes, helping clients more during this time with corporate freezes and restructures, estate and will reviews, international planning, divorce and separation consultation, and planning than anytime in our history. We also helped our community a lot this year during the COVID outbreak.”
FAISAL KARMALI Practice: Popowich Karmali Advisory Group Firm: CIBC Wood Gundy Location: Calgary, AB
After earning the top spot on last year’s Top 50 Advisors list, Faisal Karmali returns at number six for 2021 after a stellar year in which he grew his AUM by nearly $100 million. An expert when it comes to retirement planning, Karmali says he joined the wealth management industry because of his passion for helping others reach their goals. “I grew up seeing people not able to reach their goals because of financial constraints and wanted to help people live their lives without that worry about money,” he says. That’s exactly what Karmali has been able to do over the course of his 23-year career and what he hopes to continue doing. “My goal is to educate and help more Canadians retire with the lifestyle they want,” he says. While 2020 was a challenging year for his practice, Karmali says his team’s ability to adapt was a highlight. “I am incredibly proud of the Popowich Karmali Advisory Group team and how everyone worked together to help our clients with whatever they needed through COVID,” he says. “Our clients are seniors, and the team stepped up to support them.”
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TODD DEGELMAN Practice: Degelman Pruden Group Firm: Wellington-Altus Private Wealth Location: Saskatoon, SK
Cracking the top five for the third year in a row, Wellington-Altus co-founder Todd Degelman celebrated an impressive milestone in 2020, crossing the half-billion mark in AUM. That growth goes hand-in-hand with that of his firm, which has amassed more than $10 billion in assets since its inception in 2017. Degelman has multiple goals he wants to accomplish in 2021. “My primary goals for the year are threefold,” he says. “First, my clients are number one, so ensuring clients are comfortable and have peace of mind after this unique and volatile year is top of the list. Next, my team is focusing on adding assets through referrals as we continue to grow our business. And, as always, one of my overarching objectives is to help build the best independent brokerage firm in the country.” Those objectives keep Degelman galvanized, and they’re why he sees himself in this role for years to come. “There’s nothing else I would rather be doing, as I love the business and my clients,” he says. “I truly believe taking care of clients and their investment portfolios is one of the most rewarding jobs a person can have.”
MARC DALPÉ Practice: Équipe Dalpé Milette Firm: Richardson Wealth Location: Montreal, QC
After celebrating his 30th year as an advisor in 2020, Marc Dalpé can now also celebrate earning the number-four spot on this year’s Top 50 Advisors list. Dalpé began his career as an investment banker in 1981 and says he became an advisor because he was “attracted by the independence of the investment advisor model and its ability to manage its business. Plus, I enjoy helping people and contributing to their well-being.” In his long career, Dalpé has had numerous achievements, including winning the national IDA Distinction Award in 1998 and playing a major role in Richardson’s recent transformation to Richardson Wealth. Yet one of his proudest accomplishments is the way he, his practice and his firm were able to tackle the challenges of COVID-19. “We handled it extremely well,” Dalpé says. “Our technology platform performed very well, and we did not have any relapse in client servicing. Our portfolio management was also very active and performing. I would dare to say that our client appreciation is at the highest level it has been in 30 years in the business. We saw a high level of client referrals, which is a good indication of this.”
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TOP 50 ADVISORS 3
IDA KHAJADOURIAN Practice: Khajadourian Wealth Management Firm: Richardson Wealth Location: Toronto, ON
Advisors were working hard to protect the capital of their investors in 2020, but Ida Khajadourian was also significantly adding to her AUM. Khajadourian had the largest AUM growth of any advisor on this year’s Top 50, with an impressive gain of more than $661 million. She recognizes that this massive increase will mean more work, but she’s prepared. “My primary goals for the coming year are to add more client support and services, ensure every client has a written financial plan, convert more commission-based clients over to fee-based discretionary management where suitable, and add to my knowledge by achieving two more certifications,” she says. Being named to the Top 50 is merely the latest of Khajadourian’s many accomplishments. In 2019, she was named Specialist Investor of the Year at the Women in Finance Awards, something she points to as one of her proudest accomplishments. “I was thrilled with this award and recognition, having spent 20 years of my career trying to be different,” Khajadourian says. “Sharing that evening with some of my closest friends and family was incredibly special to me.”
ROB TÉTRAULT Practice: Tétrault Wealth Advisory Group Firm: Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management Location: Winnipeg, MB
After coming in at number six on last year’s Top 50 Advisors list, Rob Tétrault moves into the runner-up position for 2021. Tétrault had another strong year in 2020, recording the fourth highest AUM growth among the Top 50 and taking home silver at the 2020 Wealth Professional Awards for Advisory Team of the Year (Fewer Than 10 Staff). He holds the most certifications of any advisor in the Top 50, including a unique one: juris doctor. Since leaving a law practice 11 years ago, Tétrault has built a strong team and a reputation as a forward-thinking advisor. “People had often told me that I was skilled at bringing things back to the basics,” he says. “I had also recently completed a finance MBA, so being an investment advisor was a natural fit. I made the leap and never looked back.” While Tétrault says one of his main goals for the coming year is to grow his asset base, he has several other targets in mind. “I want to grow the follower base by about 5,000 on YouTube/Facebook/LinkedIn,” he says. “Additionally, grow the Canaccord branch by about $150 million. I want to have a wonderful year for risk-adjusted returns and make sure clients’ capital is well protected. I aim to do 200 appearances in media during the year and release over 100 pieces of content for clients – videos and blog entries. I’d like to increase my webinar sign-ups by 35%, all while continuing to have fun every single day.”
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Practice: Nicola Wealth Firm: Nicola Wealth Location: Vancouver, BC
After making her debut on the Top 50 Advisors list last year, Nicola Wealth’s Karen Ikeda takes the top spot for 2021, becoming the first female advisor to rank at number one. With a book of business worth just under $1.2 billion, Ikeda has by far the largest AUM total among the Top 50, and she also had the fifth highest AUM growth in 2020. In addition, her three certifications (CFP, CLU and CIM) make her a well-rounded choice for the number-one advisor. “It is an honour to be recognized as the top advisor among this esteemed group,” Ikeda says. “This confirms how a committed work ethic, a dedication to clients and a steadfast approach to planning can truly reap rewards, particularly in a year as volatile as 2020.” A smaller client base allows Ikeda to understand and pay attention to each of her clients’ individual needs. Her servicebased approach is dedicated to identifying clients’ retirement,
investment and estate planning objectives, completing retirement income projections, and determining the most suitable products to meet their needs. Maintaining that level of service, along with sharing her expertise, is something Ikeda plans to focus on in the coming year. “I want to continue working closely with my clients and to do my part in mentoring and collaborating with the up-andcoming financial advisors at Nicola Wealth,” she says. Ikeda’s success in a challenging year is a testament to both her own ability and her firm’s adaptability. “Facing a global pandemic is not easy, particularly when it can create speculation and worry around its impact on the markets and investors’ portfolios,” she says. “While our firm moved to a remote work environment relatively seamlessly, there was always the risk of feeling disconnected from clients we were not able to meet with in person. When facing challenges like these, I found it helpful to remember that the parameters put in place are put in place for the health and well-being of our society. Through virtual meetings and consistent communication, I have maintained and even strengthened my relationships with clients.”
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SPECIAL PROMOTIONAL FEATURE
Finding opportunity in the everyday Avenue Living Asset Management recently reached $2 billion in AUM. CEO Anthony Giuffre tells WP how his company found success by looking where nobody else was DURING A YEAR when a number of businesses struggled, Avenue Living found a way to not only succeed, but also reach a monumental milestone. The real estate investment firm now has more than $2 billion of assets under management. According to CEO Anthony Giuffre, the company achieved this through a disciplined approach, buying based on fundamentals and yield. “Making sure that we don’t buy in geographies that lack diversification or into an asset type that lacks diversification in customer base was key to our investment strategy,” he says. Avenue Living is a multi-family consolidator in mid-market, low-density housing designed for the Canadian essential workforce. The company recently surpassed 10,000 units; Giuffre says Avenue Living’s “sweet spot” is class B and C low-density assets, as well as focusing on the needs of its specific clientele through a vertically integrated operating platform. Based in Calgary, Avenue Living began in 2006 by investing in a 24-unit townhouse complex in Brooks, Alberta – an asset it still owns today. The company provides housing to people who are stable tenants but might not be able to afford to purchase a home at average market rates. This demographic often includes essential workers, such as the service sector, health professionals, city workers and more. Since its beginnings in Alberta, Avenue
Living has expanded into Saskatchewan and Manitoba and now holds units in 17 Western Canadian cities, including secondary and tertiary markets like Medicine Hat, Moose Jaw and Red Deer, as well as primary markets such as Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg. The company’s assets are currently split 50/50 between secondary and primary markets. Over the last 15 years, Giuffre says he’s been humbled more than he cares to remember. “I’ve had to essentially pivot in
investing “in the everyday” and focusing on the fundamentals – “not chasing the shiny object in the room,” he says, “but looking at what people needed and providing them with what we deem as achievable, sustainable workforce everyday housing.” Avenue Living’s track record and investment strategy make the organization a strong alternative in the private REIT market. “We’re looking for communities that are balanced and have a GDP per capita where you have employment coming in,” Giuffre explains.
“Avenue Living is not a company that raised a bunch of money, went out and bought portfolio after portfolio. We did it one building at a time” Anthony Giuffre, Avenue Living growing this portfolio through mistakes, three recessions and now this pandemic,” he says. “You learn how to define yourself.” Calling Avenue Living “the animal that shouldn’t exist,” Giuffre defines the company and as an operator. “Avenue Living is not a company that raised a bunch of money, went out and bought portfolio after portfolio,” he says. “We did it one building at a time. I would call it an outside-in story.” Ultimately, Giuffre says, it all started with
He notes that Avenue Living uses the same rationale as stores like Walmart or Costco, with a hub and spoke model – even in rural communities or secondary/tertiary markets, their businesses are supported by a greater trading area that often has population multiples of three to 10 times the local market. “What we’re doing is looking for these communities to be regional hubs,” Giuffre says. “They’re going to be net-positive
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THE ROAD TO $2 BILLION Avenue Living Asset Management had a landmark year in 2020, passing the $2 billion AUM mark in December. Here’s how that breaks down between the company’s five funds.
Avenue Living Core Trust
Avenue Living Opportunity Trust
Avenue Living US Real Estate Trust*
Avenue Living Agricultural Land Trust
employment; they’re going to be where people come in to buy things regionally at distribution centres.” In the Prairies, Giuffre points out, “big, expansive land with limited population” is characteristic of the region. As a result, infrastructure is needed. “We’ve focused our purchasing on these infrastructure points, and as a result, it’s a very sustainable workforce housing group that has worked well for us,” he says, adding that Avenue Living has continued to grow through regional recessions and has even benefited from them. With significant industry experience and a number of assets under management, Giuffre says the company has recently begun to look for assets in the larger markets, such as Calgary, Edmonton and other major metropolitan areas in Alberta and the Prairies. “Our AUM grew by $450 million last year, and the bulk of that occurred in primary markets,” he says. In the end, Giuffre says, his company brings several factors to the table that other real estate investment options do not. “We
look at our residents,” he says. “We provide a very reasonably priced, affordable product.” During a year in which the world’s economy was shaken by the COVID-19 pandemic, Giuffre and Avenue Living prioritized their residents’ present and future needs. Those residents, according to Giuffre, are essential workers who continued to work during the pandemic and are “the lifeblood of the economy.” “When discussing rent collection in 2020, people ask me, ‘Well, that’s great you housed people, but how were they able to pay?’” he says. “Essentially, anywhere between 95% and 97% of rent was collected in a given month throughout the pandemic.” To Giuffre, the fact that essential workers are living in their buildings and were able to continue paying their rent during the pandemic speaks volumes about his company’s business model. He also believes Avenue Living is a great alternative because of its status as an operator, which means the organization measures KPIs on the business multiple times a day and focuses on enhancing day-to-day operations in real time.
Avenue Living Mini Mall Storage Properties Trust** *$85 million+ assets under contract **$50 million+ assets under contract Source: Avenue Living Asset Management
“I receive multiple daily updates about how many calls are being answered at the call centre,” he says. “I know every single day how many work orders we have outstanding, how many people are doing showings, while staying up to date on our lease conversion ratios and renewal rates. We are very much in touch with our team. We communicate frequently. I like to have multiple touchpoints to ensure we’re delivering to our standards.” Rather than buying a property and handing it over to a third-party property manager, Avenue Living instead prides itself on being an owner-operator, with a vertically integrated platform that is unique in the industry. The organization has more than 520 employees, who run the business “shoulder to shoulder” with stakeholders, Giuffre says, and work to ensure they are keeping residents, investors and vendors top of mind with every decision the company makes.
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Knowledge is power Jackie Porter has built a thriving practice by helping people understand the intricacies of their finances
WHEN JACKIE PORTER was growing up, money wasn’t something that was discussed in her home. At a young age, she ventured out and began working multiple jobs, but she quickly figured out how draining that was. She obtained a degree in communications and psychology with the goal of becoming a journalist or therapist. After trying her hand in those fields, including a five-year stint with a telecommunications company, Porter had her first real conversation about money and began to understand how she could put her hard-earned salary to work for her. “I actually needed to find someone to help with my finances,” she says. “During the time at the company, I saved money in the pension plan and maxed out the stock options – I was a really good saver. A friend introduced me to a financial planner, so that’s how I found out about the industry.” That financial planner happened to be a woman of colour, like Porter, and their meeting started her on a path to learning everything she could about wealth management. “I didn’t realize how rare that was, but she inspired me to get in the industry,” Porter says. “She had me thinking about my money and it working for me – that excited me. I envisioned myself learning everything I could, and when I did, I started teaching others.” The role turned out to be a perfect fit, as
Porter was able to use many of the journalism and psychology skills she’d picked up along the way. “It gives me the opportunity to be an observer of conversations,” she says. “I can actively listen and ask good questions.” After being recruited by the advisor who piqued her interest in the industry, Porter began by obtaining her insurance and mutual fund licences. From there, she earned her CFP and got involved in financial planning organizations. She eventually moved to EFI Financial, which was taken over by Carte Financial Group after the previous owners retired; Porter remains a partner there today. She says her approach is all about helping people look at every aspect of their finances. “I love helping people see the full scope of their circumstances – how can they make their money work harder, improve cash flow, understand where money is going, how to
leverage the money they have and see the possibilities of what they can do with their money,” she says, adding that she also tries to bring all the legal documents together to help clients understand their full financial picture. Over the years, one of Porter’s specialties has become empowering women to take full control of their finances. “We haven’t, in the past, given women the confidence they need,” she says. “Typically, when we talk to couples, we talk to the man, but I think that is starting to change because women are standing to inherit trillions over the next 10 years. I do a lot of work helping women, single women in particular, encouraging them to feel confident about their money.” Being a woman of colour in wealth management is something Porter identifies as her biggest challenge. “I have to work harder – that is the reality – for people to take the
ADVANCING THE CAUSE OF FINANCIAL LITERACY At a young age, Jackie Porter dreamed of one day being a philanthropist. While that’s still a goal, she’s already giving back to many causes, particularly those centred around financial literacy. She has worked with the Toronto District School Board to teach kids about finance and has run a financial literacy summer camp. Porter also supports charities close to her, including Gilda’s Club, a support community for anyone touched by cancer. It was with Gilda’s Club that Porter was able to celebrate one of her biggest career highlights: a launch party for her book, Single by Choice or by Chance.
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JACKIE PORTER AT A GLANCE
PRACTICE Team Jackie Porter
FIRM Carte Financial Group
LOCATION Mississauga, ON
YEARS IN THE INDUSTRY 24
EDUCATION Bachelor’s degree in psychology and communications from York University
“I love helping people see the full scope of their circumstances ... how to leverage the money they have and see the possibilities of what they can do” things I do seriously,” she says. “Knowing my stuff and being sure I got all my credentials was important.” That’s the path she encourages new advisors to follow as well. “There are all kinds of challenges people go through life
with,” she says. “The biggest piece of advice I can give is to show up confidently by doing the work so people can see beyond whatever you see as your deficiency. Get credentials, learn everything you can about the industry and be curious.”
CERTIFICATIONS CFP, EPC and currently working on a RWM designation
SPECIALIZATION Female financial empowerment, financial literacy
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SPECIAL PROMOTIONAL FEATURE
Truly transformational The leaders of Q Wealth tell WP how their portfolio management firm serves as a tech-driven alternative to independent IIROC and MFDA dealers
THE CANADIAN wealth management industry is in the early days of an independent revolution – and one firm is poised to be the “truly transformational” catalyst for explosive growth. Toronto-based Q Wealth Partners believes the portfolio management space is akin to where the registered investment advisor (RIA) model in the US was in the early 2000s, but the missing element has been the absence of platform providers – a role now synonymous with being a purveyor of integrated technology. A number of independent brokers gained both assets and top-level advisors in 2020, despite uncertainty and market volatility. Many ambitious advisors and portfolio managers feel stifled and disenfranchised at large corporations – a sense that’s compounded when they’re presented with superior, more efficient technology elsewhere. Enter Q Wealth, a large portfolio manager that believes in true partnership, a mantra that means partners own all the equity in their practices with “none of the risk and uncertainty of trying to do it from scratch.” It’s a model designed to “begin by beating every independent dealer in the country on both a cash flow and equity ownership basis,” topped with a groundbreaking technology offering. “Every other firm that’s come at fintech in the wealth space has made the promise of ‘we will take the table stakes and administrative paperwork off the advisor’s plate to give them more time to spend with their clients,’” says Jared Rabinowitz, executive and founding
partner at Q Wealth. “The reality is they need to know what to do to fill that time with their clients. How do they provide a significantly enhanced value proposition, and how does the technology in their firm guide them in delivering that experience?” Q Wealth’s leaders highlight a slew of “failed robo-advisors” that were launched with the aim of disrupting the advisory space, only to backpedal when it became clear that technology could never completely replace human advice. Today, many robos vend their digital solutions to dealers and advisors, but
cial planning, investments, and insurance, with automated account aggregation and real-time cash flow tracking across the client’s entire financial picture. “When a firm comes to us, aside from giving them all of the technology, we come in and really work with them from a practice management standpoint,” explains Q Wealth executive partner Clive Cholerton. “We’re going to really show them how to connect the financial plan to the portfolio, how they can maximize the skills and abilities of their staff, and ensure everyone on their team has a true
“When a firm comes to us, aside from giving them all of the technology, we come in and really work with them from a practice management standpoint” Clive Cholerton, Q Wealth unlike Q Wealth, they were not created to help the human advisor be more relevant to their clients. Instead of building the same technology as other Canadian robos, Q Wealth bought the best-of-the-best systems and hyperfocused development dollars on enhancing the advisor-client interaction. The QSuite tech offering brings together an everexpanding ecosystem of apps that unify CRM and client portals, behavioural finance, finan-
career path so they stay on for the long term while reaching their full potential. “We’re not just giving advisors technology and saying, ‘Wish you the best,’” he adds. “We’re saying, ‘We are going to give you great technology, and we’re going to teach you how to work with it to create an experience that will delight clients. Then we’re going to help you accelerate the growth of your firm so you’re putting more dollars into your pocket at the end of the day.”
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Cholerton says Q Wealth acts like a management consultant with the heart of a fintech company, filling the gap between the two pillars of technology and profitability. To that end, it has in-house departments dedicated to areas like partner success and branding/digital marketing, with the goal of bringing a new style to the industry. For example, its marketing department is composed of senior executives from the music industry, who use the same techniques to market advisors as they would to support top international artists. Fee compression is a hot topic in the advisory community and is set to remain so, with CRM3 and future initiatives likely to shine a light on the total cost of portfolio ownership. The Q Wealth partnership is focused on helping advisors meet this challenge with lower-cost access to the third-party solutions they love, complemented by innovative solutions to address the market challenges of the day. While Q Wealth has been growing aggressively, the company is selective about the advisors they work with. Prospective partners
“Our unique technology platform, combined with our team and expertise, allows us to layer in the services of our existing PMs where required” Jared Rabinowitz, Q Wealth must be a fiduciary (or be ready to make the leap), enjoy collaboration, have built a great team and run a mature practice with revenue in excess of $2 million a year. They must not be investment-centric – or, if they have historically been so, have a genuine desire to shift toward holistic wealth advice. In 2020, Q Wealth pivoted from exclusively working with former IIROC-registered advisors and portfolio managers and recently brought aboard two new partner firms from the MFDA world. “Our unique technology platform, combined with our team and expertise, allows us to layer in the services of our existing PMs where required,” Rabinowitz says. “Q Wealth is able to onboard an entire book
of business in bulk while up-converting it to meet all the standards of a PM firm. This includes ensuring every client relationship has the requisite KYC function, IPS, mandate tracking and rebalancing, performed by the firm’s head office trade desk.” In addition to being registered as a portfolio manager, Q Wealth is also an investment fund manager, allowing for a suite of in-house solutions, as well as the ability to create and administer custom pools for partners. “We are not looking to be a quick exit strategy,” Cholerton says. “We are looking for advisors who want to grow with us and also want to help one another, sharing best practices. It is a true partnership.”
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Cultivating strong relationships in the digital age As online meetings have become the norm, one of the biggest challenges has been how to forge and maintain relationships. Mark Carter outlines four ways to do this with technology
THE SOCIAL DILEMMA, currently on Netflix, is the latest in a string of researched documentaries or studies adding credence to going ‘back to basics’ when it comes to human connection in this digital age. So many industry leaders, co-founders, executives and ethical designers are adding to the numbers voicing concerns over addictions to technology. Chamath Palihapitiya, a former Facebook executive, notably expressed personal concern about the platform helping to create “tools that are starting to erode the social fabric of how society works”. It’s a telling sign that so many innovators or digital execs minimize their own offspring’s access to tools they have helped create. The digital age is here to stay as we continue racing into the future. It’s the manner in which we choose to use the technology in our hands that helps maintain strong relationships in a hyper-connected, tech-addicted digital age. The following are four ways to do this.
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Take off the masks
The first lesson can be learned powerfully from the words of a teenage girl during a seminar I delivered on human behaviour and human connection. “Oh, this explains so much! I get it. I was pretending to be really [emotional] to land the hot guy. Which I did! But then after a while it didn’t work because, you know, we’re just not that alike.” Authenticity is a powerful way of inviting or adding value into our lives and the lives of
biggest dirty little secret in business”. A lack of candour costs a business so much: trust, productivity, innovation, time, everything. The same is true for our personal relationships. They suffer when transparency is sabotaged or subterranean. If someone you truly value has upset you, tell them. Few people have developed the psychic ability to accurately or fully read minds! The digital age seems to breed the anti thesis of candour, with phenomena like ‘ghosting’ or ‘cancel culture’ taking off.
Authenticity is a powerful way of inviting or adding value into our lives and the lives of others. Pretending for the sake of connection often fuels more heartache or disconnection others. Pretending for the sake of connection often fuels more heartache or disconnection. Authenticity allows for a healthy stickiness over neediness. Our historical predecessors thousands of years ago might have been lucky to interact with 150 mainstay connections in a lifetime. These days, people invest so much time in filtering highlights for highlights, seeking to gain a far greater number from a single social post in the duration of a coffee break. Yet the price is significant. A short-term dopamine fix of surface, shallow or even fake loveliness from a digital collection of every Tom, Dick or Harriet bundled into one happy bucket labelled ‘friends’ often only serves to pull us away from the gems in this world.
Jack Welch, the late former CEO of GE, described a common trait seen in the digital age – regardless of whether applied personally or professionally – as “the
A conversation culture, rather than a cut-off one, is better for relationships and the social fabric of community.
Speak a common language
We live in a world of 196 recognized countries and more than 7,000 known languages. More than half of the world’s population speaks the top 10 of these. Yet there remain two common languages we all understand that transcend differences, divisions and geographical boundaries. What’s more, neither of these requires the utterance of words. (And no, they’re not the languages of SMS or emojis! How often do you have to ask friends to help you translate these?) Kindness and love are languages the deaf can hear, the blind can see and that can bring light to the darkest of spaces. In fact, Robert Waldinger, the current director of perhaps the world’s longest study of adult life and development, shares in his “What Makes a
Good Life” TED Talk that the secret to a happy life turns out, after all, to be feeling loved and supported.
Prioritize quality over quantity
The importance of human connec tion minus technology is rooted in scientific reasoning. British anthropologist and psychologist Robin Dunbar stumbled upon a magic number while studying the behaviours of primate groups. Applying the same modelling to our own primate group, the predictions about the size of social circles or the number of relationships that people can realistically maintain turns out to be surprisingly accurate: 150. This number has been prevalent through out history and is still typical of modern-day social circles, from the average size of the populations of English villages around the 16th century (160) to the number of guests typically invited to weddings today (148, from a study of 18,000 brides) or even the average number of Facebook friends (150 to 200). Among all your connections, consider how many relationships are truly meaningful or present in your world. Perhaps take note of who your 150 are and invest more in them than in strangers. Our humanity and the quality time we invest in relationships nourishes their longevity. Embrace and use technology as a great enabler and connector. Be less concerned about the rush for vanity metrics or popularity. And don’t be so busy rummaging in the digital rocks and stones that you miss the reallife diamonds.
Mark Carter is an international keynote speaker, trainer and coach. He has more than 20 years of experience as a global learning and development professional.
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TELL US ABOUT YOUR OTHER LIFE Email firstname.lastname@example.org
In just three years with the Kanata Nordic Ski Club, Garlock has helped plan many events, including a ski swap, evening ski nights and the annual pretzel race
Pairs of cross-country skis Garlock owns (two classic and one skate)
Maximum kilometres per hour he can reach in perfect conditions
Garlock’s fundraising goal for the Kanata Nordic Ski Club this year
FRESH TRACKS When he’s not keeping an eye on the markets, advisor Cory Garlock is likely hitting the trails on his cross-country skis AFTER BREAKING into the wealth management industry, Cory Garlock was looking for an activity to balance the intensity of his day job, and cross-country skiing fit the bill. “I was hooked from the first time, as I loved the full-body workout, spending time outside in the winter and relieving stress,” says Garlock, an Ottawabased VP and investment advisor at TD Wealth Private Investment Advice.
Today, Garlock not only takes to the trails regularly, but also gives back to the sport in multiple ways as a coach and volunteer with the Kanata Nordic Ski Club. “I want to encourage my daughter to ski, so I feel that this is the best way,” he says. “The only thing holding our ski club back from more lesson enrolment is a lack of volunteers. This endeavour gives me an opportunity to give back.”
Garlock is also leading the fundraising for the grooming of a new trail – his latest project since getting involved with the club. “I joined the board as a special events coordinator three years ago,” he says. “I have planned events and often seek sponsorships to reduce or cover the cost. This year, other than coaching, my sole focus is on raising funds for a new trail that is part of the Trans Canada Trail network.”
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DISCOVER INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES & VALUABLE INSIGHTS
2021 HOW THE PDAC VIRTUAL CONVENTION WORKS The Convention will take place within a virtual venue called a platform, comparable to a physical venue. Event components that attendees would traditionally experience in-person will be presented virtually. A virtual convention offers attendees more benefits than ever before!
MARCH 8-11 VIRTUAL CONVENTION JOIN FROM ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD
REGISTER AT pdac.ca/convention #PDAC2021
GLOBAL CONNECTIONS Access to a broader global audience and even more valuable business connections with investors, financiers, banking executives, fund managers, brokers, analysts and more!
MATCHMAKING Facilitated matchmaking based on all participantsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; interests in order to deliver the most focused networking experience.
DISCUSS INVESTMENT POTENTIAL AT THE ONLINE EXHIBIT HALL Book meetings with junior and major mining companies, mid-sized producers, prospectors, financial institutions, international governments and suppliers.
MUCH MORE THAN A WEBINAR Attend various interactive presentations with breakout sessions, group discussions and be among your peers.
BROADER ACCESS Attend virtual networking lounges, educational sessions and entertainment all from the comfort of your home or office.
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INVESTING IN THE EVERYDAY. ALTERNATIVE IN THOUGHT. PRACTICAL IN ACTION.
We’ve spent over 15 years honing our methodical, strategic approach to investment across: multi-family residential, Canadian farmland, self-storage and commercial real estate assets – amassing over $2billion in AUM across Canada and recently the US – an approach that is grounded in discipline. Our interests are aligned with our stakeholders, grounding our decision-making in a way that benefits our investment community. And our approach to investing in and operating everyday assets and amassing equity is not only logical, it’s quantifiable and replicable.
INVEST ALONGSIDE US avenuelivingam.com
13/01/2021 4:28:14 AM