DENVER—May 9, 2022—First Ascent Asset Management, the industry’s first flat-fee TAMP, announced today that advisors responding to the 2022 T3/Inside Information Software Survey ranked the firm as the #1 TAMP based on client satisfaction for the third year in a row.
“It’s a little bit of a David and Goliath story,” says Scott MacKillop, First Ascent’s CEO. “We compete every day against large public companies and behemoths funded by private equity firms. But advisors are drawn to us by our low flat fees, excellent investment offering, and tremendous service. Then they tell their friends, and we keep growing in the midst of giants.”
Six years ago, First Ascent introduced flat fees to the TAMP world. “Nobody had ever tried it before. We thought it was a great idea, but we weren’t sure how advisors would react,” said Scott MacKillop, First Ascent’s CEO.
Now the firm has over $1 billion in AUM and has grown 1,000% in the last three years. “It looks like advisors are starting to warm up to the idea,” says MacKillop in an understatement.
“I think our size is an advantage,” says MacKillop. “As firms get bigger and go public or take big checks from private equity firms, their focus changes. They worry more about their own bottom lines than their clients’. Advisors can tell that we still have a servant culture.”
Last year First Ascent acquired Forward Financial Technology, the firm that developed its account onboarding software. “Our onboarding technology gives us another unique advantage,” says MacKillop. “It makes it easy for an advisor to digitally assess a client’s risk tolerance, generate a proposal, or open an account in minutes.”
That technology was also highly ranked in the T3/Inside Information Survey. Advisors ranked it the #1 Online Portfolio Management Tool based on client satisfaction in 2021 and 2020 and #2 in 2022. “We want to be the best partners we can to the advisors we serve,” says MacKillop. “Owning that software helps us. It allows us to react faster and make their lives easier.”
MacKillop sums it up by saying, “When you’re on the dance floor with giants you have to be nimble and keep you partners close. The results of the T3 survey suggest we’ve done a very good job of that. But you can’t rest on your laurels. Those giants never stop dancing.”