Evensky, Brown & Katz, a Florida asset management firm that wants to broaden its services to wealthy families, is moving the $350 million of assets it manages from Charles Schwab & Co. to Fidelity Investments.
Harold Evensky, the firms president, said Fidelity is better attuned than Schwab to his new business model. Theyre excited about our vision and want to help the business grow, he said.
The custody transfer plan was announced Friday. Fidelity will provide custodial services, technological support, some financial products, and marketing assistance to Evenskys new umbrella firm.
A Schwab spokesman said his company could have met Evenskys needs only at the expense of other advisers. Schwab is disappointed not to have reached an agreement with Evensky, he said.
Mr. Evensky announced in June that his Coral Gables firm would specialize in managing the assets and financial affairs of wealthy families. He said it had formed the umbrella firm, Evensky PFO, to own Evensky, Brown & Katz and form new companies or pursue partnerships with similar companies.
Though he said Friday that his firm had a good relationship with San Francisco-based Schwab, Mr. Evensky has expressed concerns over the years about Schwabs forays into the investment advice business.
Earlier this year he said Schwabs January agreement to buy U.S. Trust suggested that Schwab is looking to compete with the very advisory firms to which it supplies products.
Schwab has created anxiety before among the independent financial advisers it serves. About five years ago it came under fire for offering its own financial advisory service. Mr. Evensky noted that Schwab managed at the time to calm the fears of some of its advisory clients but that financial advice is a growing part of Schwabs business and one to which it is committed.
Nonetheless, Mr. Evensky emphasized that Schwabs purchase of U.S. Trust was not a factor in his decision. What counted was Fidelitys growing technological prowess and its enthusiasm for Evenskys new strategy, he said.
Evensky, Brown & Katz is to transfer all its assets under management to Fidelitys institutional brokerage division.
Evensky PFO aims to compete with bank trusts and high-end advisers in offering financial advisory and planning services to the rich. It plans to open offices around the country and provide services ranging from asset management to college counseling to insurance sales at relatively low cost, Mr. Evensky said.