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First Ascent Asset Management Raises $1.5 Million In Series B Funding

Press Release

November 14, 2018

Company Announcement

First Ascent secures funding.

DENVER — NOVEMBER 12, 2018 — First Ascent Asset Management, a portfolio strategist serving financial advisors, today announced it has closed a $1.5 million Series B capital raise led by a group of high net worth individuals and institutional investors.

The company will use the new capital to expand technology development, increase staffing in the investment department and operations group and enhance the firm’s digital client experience.

“I am thrilled to receive the support and validation from this experienced group of investors who have recognized the power of our business model,” said Scott MacKillop, CEO of First Ascent Asset Management. “This fresh infusion of capital will enable us to do what we do best—build a business that serves advisors and clients, while providing a clear and better alternative to traditional TAMPs.”

First Ascent broke the flat fee barrier in 2017 by offering its outsourced portfolio management strategies for a low annual fee of $500 per account, or $1,000 per household, versus the traditional percentage-of-assets-under-management basis. The flat fee applies to all client accounts, no matter how large.

“The wealth management business is changing rapidly as technology, product innovations and fee compression put pressure on advisors and their firms,” said Austin-based tech entrepreneur Craig Wagener, an early investor in First Ascent and co-founder of NewCrop, LLC. “I believe First Ascent’s innovative pricing model and elegantly simple portfolios are well-positioned to answer these challenges and fuel advisor growth.”

First Ascent offers different types of portfolios to meet a range of client needs. (Rethinking Portfolio Management). They are all based on Nobel Prize winning research and seek to provide global diversification, while minimizing taxes and expenses.

All First Ascent portfolios are managed by a highly experienced Investment Committee that includes four CFA charterholders and a Ph. D. economist. The Committee is comprised of both First Ascent investment professionals and independent, outside members who bring an added level of objectivity and fresh perspectives to its decision-making process.

MacKillop, a 40-year veteran of the financial services industry, leads a skilled team that brings more than 200 years of collective experience to First Ascent. He is a recognized thought leader and TAMP industry pioneer. He also serves as an Ambassador for the Institute for the Fiduciary Standard.

“I’ve worked with Scott and know the team he has assembled to execute this innovative business model. They are challenging industry conventions about portfolio construction and pricing,” said another early investor in First Ascent, Emmett Daly, a financial services investment banking partner at Sandler O’Neill. “This leadership team has the experience, drive and insight to take the firm to the next level.”

First Ascent has raised a total of $4.4 million. The investor group includes individuals specializing in investment banking, private equity, and real estate, as well as industry executives and a family office.


About First Ascent Asset Management

First Ascent is based in Denver and 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. First Ascent is registered as an investment adviser with the SEC.


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