Extremely wealthy people are often lured into the world of private banking and family offices, but Fidelity is successfully offering advisors the tools they need to compete with those white-glove institutions.
The company's Fidelity Family Office Services program launched in October and has already taken in about $2 billion.
Potential clients in this segment are in the $50 million and up range, so this $2 billion in fresh AUM doesn't necessarily represent a lot of rich families -- maybe fewer than 40.
But that concentrated client base frees up resources to let RIAs who work with Fidelity provide a really high-end service, with a full Fidelity team of traders, analysts, and support staff assigned to each client.
That's essentially the draw of a family office, only presented within the framework of the advisory relationship these clients already have.
It's an interesting way to help RIAs who operate on the Fidelity platform compete at the high end of the market.
It also rebuts the argument that quantity is everything when building a book is concerned. One $50 million allocation can easily generate $500,000 in fees and/or commissions for the advisor, and that revenue right there can subsidize an entire office.