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First Ascent Rolls Out Asset Management Industry’s First Flat-Fee Pricing for Financial Advisors

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February 22, 2017
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$500 fee shatters pricing paradigm, keeps value proposition.

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DENVER—FEBRUARY 22, 2017—First Ascent Asset Management, a portfolio strategist serving financial advisors, announced today that it is now offering its outsourced portfolio management strategies for a low annual flat fee of $500 per account.  The flat fee applies to all advisor accounts, no matter how large, that use First Ascent’s Global Explorer portfolios.

“We looked critically at the traditional assets under management fee model and decided it just didn’t make sense for our business,” said First Ascent CEO Scott MacKillop. “As the investment world moves inexorably to a fiduciary business model, flat asset management fees make sense—for advisors and their clients.  They’re rational, cost-effective and fair to clients.  They fit perfectly in a world where client and advisor interests intersect.”

First Ascent’s flat-fee pricing is calculated on a “cost plus reasonable margin” basis, tying fees directly to the amount of work required to provide its portfolio management services.  MacKillop says the firm—which outsources all back office functions and generates efficiencies through the use of technology—was designed to keep costs low, enabling it to focus on asset management and high-touch client service.

Advisors are responding positively to this unique combination of pricing and service.

Sandra Gontero of Epoch Wealth Management in Chagrin Falls, Ohio had this to say: “First Ascent’s investment process and flat fee model is a ‘win-win’ for advisors and our clients. Their platform and pricing made the third party asset manager selection process simple. None of the other contenders had such a compelling offer.  That coupled with the team’s outstanding customer service and seamless process of establishing and monitoring client accounts gives them an unrivaled competitive edge.  First Ascent has clearly changed the game.”

“First Ascent has created the ideal turnkey asset management program for the modern firm,” said Andrew McFadden of Panoramic Financial Advice of Fresno, California.  “It’s a simple, convenient, and cost-sensitive service built on the tried and true fundamentals of portfolio construction—everything an advisory firm could want.”

The First Ascent flat fee, which is available only through financial advisors, could have broad implications for the financial services industry.  “Flat-fee pricing removes a significant barrier to entry and makes professional investment management accessible to a wider group of investors,” said MacKillop.  “With fewer pension plans and more individual responsibility for financial security, unlocking access to investment advice may help solve the nation’s looming retirement crisis.”

About First Ascent Asset Management

First Ascent provides outsourced portfolio management services to financial advisors and their clients. The firm’s founder, Scott MacKillop, is a 40-year veteran of the financial services industry and has been providing asset management services to financial advisors for over 25 years. The First Ascent team has over 200 years of experience.  First Ascent is a registered investment advisor in the State of Colorado.