Business

Family office buys into the family offices services sector

The tier below single-family office wealth levels is increasingly being fought over by a host of players from banks, wealth managers, and multi-family offices. Some single-family offices are also getting into the act, as one of Canada’s wealthiest families thought their investment group buys into a family office service provider. 

Sagard Holdings, an investment group owned by the Desmarais family, who in turn own the Power Corporation of Canada, has bought an undisclosed stake in Grayhawk Investment Strategies, a Canadian multi-family office servicing ultra-high net worth individuals and families across the country. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. 

Commenting on the deal, Paul Desmarais III, chairman and CEO, Sagard Holdings, said: “I’m a strong believer that there is significant potential for growth and a new approach in the family office services space…”

Greyhawk broader approach to the services it provides the UNNW community was part of the reason why Sagard did the deal, according to Desmarais.  The company’s model comprising portfolio management services, a family office hub, and affinity partnerships, with non-financial groups including a recently announced partnership with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. 

Unlike its name implies, the Power Corporation of Canada isn’t an energy company, but rather a holding business owning a multitude of financial companies, including wealth management groups. 

The attraction of wealth management for the very wealthy has been a theme for many years. UK financier Jacob Rothschild started J. Rothschild Assurance Group, which became St James’s Place Wealth Management. Pharma billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli set up Waypoint Capital to buy various asset managers and to grow their assets by attracting UHNW investors. 

And, of course, many multi-family offices originally started as single-family offices before branching out to attract assets from other rich families.

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