Change - the Only Constant?
As a trustee company with a long tradition, thinking for the long term is our daily business. We develop sustainable solutions for wealth planning that will benefit current and future generations while safeguarding the things in your life that deserve special protection.
In concrete terms, our wealth planning includes an analysis of the risks to which you and your wealth are exposed. We then develop strategies for minimizing these risks over the long term. This isn’t just about achieving financial targets, but about reassuring you that your wealth is positioned on the right side of global change.
Possessing wealth is a privilege, of course, but wealthy people know all too well that it is also a great responsibility, and that it can even turn into a heavy burden. The family home, your father’s art collection, the family business: as well as their financial worth, these things have an emotional value; which is why they deserve special appreciation and special treatment.
Our awareness of this special bond is what drives our highly individual and personal approach to client wealth advisory. We look at wealth in its entirety. It’s important for us to gain a full picture of our clients’ professional and family circumstances. The more detailed our knowledge, the more effectively our wealth planning can achieve a sustainability that meets the clients’ financial – but also more general – requirements.
Our approach gives you certainty that your wealth will endure even as times change, and that your and your family’s future is built on solid, value-based foundations.
A central aim of our advice on asset allocation is to achieve a healthy balance of opportunity and risk for your wealth. Are you invested disproportionately in one particular asset class, for example, creating an excessive concentration of risk? It can also be risky to hold your assets in just one country, especially one that shows signs of instability. We use smart asset allocation to counter these risks. A combination of different asset classes helps, as does geographical diversification, i.e. managing assets in a variety of, preferably stable, countries.
As a trustee company, we approach this key task holistically, meaning that we don’t limit ourselves purely to bank assets. We also look at real estate, direct investments, art and classic vehicles, for example, as components of your wealth. We are keen to develop an understanding of how important these things are to you. The emotional connection to these types of assets can be very significant. An individual asset allocation strategy will therefore also answer questions about responsibility for assets, about the optimum environment for them, the work involved and the cost of investment.
We help you gain an overview of your assets, and help you analyze the obligations and opportunities they bring. Based on this analysis, we formulate a plan to protect your assets for the long term so that you, your family and future generations can continue to benefit from them.
As wealth grows, the structures involved often become complex, which is why we believe that resilient, comprehensible documentation is vital. For one thing, good documentation makes it much easier to deal with the tax authorities. A meaningful and understandable registry of your wealth also helps you maintain a reliable overview and create certainty. Ultimately, your assets shouldn’t just be a burden: they should bring you happiness.
We have a team of qualified specialists to deal with individual wealth documentation and monitoring. You can find out more under Reporting & Controlling.
All too often, wealth planning only asks what environment is best for a wealthy person from a purely financial perspective: anyone who doesn’t just want to have some of their wealth managed from another country, but who is looking for a new place to reside will usually be told all about the tax implications or the existence of state funding programs. When looking for a new residence, however, it’s just as important, if not more so, to ask the basic question: will the person behind the wealth actually like living in this new homeland. Sustainable wealth planning must consider whether the person will adjust well to the country and its people, and whether it is a place that can accommodate the person’s preferred lifestyle.
Choosing a new place of residence is not, for many reasons, the same as acquiring a new citizenship. New citizenship normally costs more, for a start, and involves a greater amount of organizational effort. Citizenship is also more binding and so offers greater reliability and security. Unlike many rights of residence, it is granted in perpetuity. The motivation for acquiring citizenship is often less to do with (purely) financial reasons.
Depending on your current nationality, a new passport may allow you to travel more easily (visa-free). Then there are a lot of wealthy people who take on a new nationality at least in part for security reasons. Why? Because in many countries wealthy people are vulnerable to government whim or social tensions; and during social unrest they can become a football kicked around by conflicting parties.
Our experience has shown that the issue of alternative residences or an additional nationality is very complex and needs to be discussed in a familiar and trusted environment. It’s no surprise, then, that we already know many of the people interested in such matters as clients – and especially as clients of our Family Office services.
Understanding between the generations has to be based on shared values. Living up to and passing on these values helps to strengthen families. Education is a key tool for passing on family values and for building bridges between the generations.
These days, wealthy families often have complex asset structures. They might include businesses or other investments that are difficult to understand. Ensuring that wealth is passed on safely and securely in such situations requires the new generation to be prepared.
Kaiser Partner provides powerful support to wealthy families with services like its Summer Academy. During this multi-day event, children – teenagers and young adults – are taught the basics of wealth management. Essential information is delivered and topical issues discussed in presentations given by our specialists and, when appropriate, by external experts: How and why are assets structured? What exactly is diversification? Why are the drivers of global change important for the development of your family’s wealth?
The information taught at the Academy provides the next generation with a fundamental set of tools, as well as a deeper understanding that will help them deal responsibly with the family’s wealth. In response to continuous interest, we have been offering this program for several years now. For us, this demand underlines the need to involve the next generation in succession and inheritance questions.
The initiator and host of the Summer Academy is Benedict Kaiser. His experience in family office services has given him a wide knowledge of the interests and needs of the new generation of wealthy people.
Interested? Benedict Kaiser would be pleased to receive your application:
As well as education for the next generation, many wealthy families need help more generally with coordinating and balancing all the interests of different family members. Often the relationships between family members can be even more complex than the assets involved. This makes it all the more important to institutionalize the coordination process to some degree. Many families have also found it beneficial to have a neutral partner on hand – someone known and accepted by everyone – to help settle disagreements, for example.
As a trustee that has supported families for many years, we often find that these families appreciate our employees as neutral advisors, and not just on financial matters. Kaiser Partner also offers specific, concrete services to support families effectively. Family conferences, for example, that bring all the members of the family round the table. Ideally these are held at regular intervals. If there is a dispute, a family conference can be a vital forum for sorting out differences of opinion.
Our advisors will help you explore how, with our support, the different interests within the family can be brought back in harmony with each other.
Philanthropic commitments are based on very personal considerations. You may be committed to helping resolve a particularly urgent social issue. Or perhaps you are interested in environmental or animal conservation.
Depending on how much of a financial commitment you want to make, you will need to think about the most effective way to further your chosen cause. And if you want to remain involved for the long term, and are prepared to make a larger investment, it might be worth considering a special structure.
During the wealth planning process, we often feel it’s right to mention another positive aspect: we have noticed that in many cases supporting philanthropic projects has a tendency to bring families closer together. Working together on a good cause provides an opportunity to try out and develop key skills and tools for decision-making and conflict resolution within the family.
Living in a complex world or living in a world full of opportunities? This questions contains two sides of one and the same coin.
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