Schwab Platform To Aid Adviser Transition to Independence

Schwab Institutional announced enhancements to its package for start-up registered investment advisers (RIAs).

The Schwab Business Start-up Solutions package includes back-office support, marketing tools, and start-up financing for the growing number of advisers leaving established firms to become RIAs.

While Schwab has long been serving transitioning advisers, it says it has enhanced these services becasuse the interest in the independent model has grown among successful fee-oriented advisers, a release said. The new solution includes all previously offered solutions by Schwab to help the transition to independence, including helping them determine if independence is right for them and assistance with business planning. The recently announced forthcoming additions include:

  • Technology: Schwab Institutional is working with Schwab Performance Technologies (SPT) to offer a Web-based performance reporting application allowing advisers to outsource core back-office tasks.
  • Marketing: Schwab plans to roll out an online tool later this summer that advisers can use to create logos, stationery, business cards, announcements, and client brochures. Once advisers’ businesses are established, they can take advantage of marketing tools through the GrowthPoint practice management program.
  • Start-up financing: Schwab has a program to offer start-up financing to qualified advisers joining Schwab Institutional with at least $75 million in fee-based assets under management. After an initial pilot phase that began in January 2007, the Schwab Institutional Business Loan is now available in most states and is designed to help advisers finance expenses associated with start-up of their new businesses. Loan amounts are based on an evaluation of each adviser’s creditworthiness and begin at $100,000.
  • Benefits: In September 2007, TriNet began offering healthcare and benefits services to advisers who have a relationship with Schwab. Building on that agreement, Charles Schwab Trust Company (CSTC), a division of Charles Schwab Bank, is now working with TriNet to offer advisers an integrated 401(k) plan. The turnkey 401(k) plan provides advisers with investment options from more than 400 fund families along with integrated recordkeeping and administrative services provided by a regional third-party administrator (TPA) using CSTC’s back-office trustee, custody, trading and cashiering services.
  • Office services: Advisers going independent will now have access to discounted office furniture and services from National Office Furniture, a division of Kimball International. This is in addition to Schwab’s existing relationship with CB Richard Ellis to provide help in finding an office space.

Advisers who custody assets with Schwab Institutional can also receive vendor discounts from office suppliers and services, such as United Parcel Service, OfficeMax, CompuCom, and Laserfiche, according to the release.

More information is available at