Talk - Why did you start True Wealth?
From an unexpected fortune to a digital wealth manager. In today's Coffee Talk, Felix Niederer talks to Oliver Herren about the beginnings of True Wealth.
The initial situation: An unexpected fortune
Oliver recalls: "It all started when I founded Digitec with colleagues in 2000 and we were able to sell part of it to Migros in 2012. This gave me a certain amount of assets, and the question arose as to how best to manage the money. At that time, I was still far removed from the world of financial services. But I realized that there was an urgent need for improvement in traditional wealth management in Switzerland."
The aha moment: the need for online wealth management
Oliver continues, "I started looking for solutions and realized that wealth management should be done online. That's when I approached Felix at a barbecue, and that's how our journey together began. We decided to take a closer look at the market."
Exploring the market: lack of transparency and high costs
Together, we conducted a thorough market analysis. Oliver recalls, "We visited various banks, including private banks and big banks. The industry irritated me. Nothing was online. Instead, you often sat in elegant rooms, at a magnificent mahogany table overlooking Lake Zurich or on Paradeplatz, to have a bank advisor explain why you should use their wealth management services. We then also examined various offers and discovered that the overall costs were considerable. These included not only obvious fees, but often hidden costs in the fine print that made the product seem unattractive, unless one placed great value on occasionally sitting at that very mahogany table with the bank advisor. We also took a close look at the portfolio and investment proposals. They were solid and well diversified. But the transparency left something to be desired. We asked ourselves whether the product costs, the so-called TER (Total Expense Ratio), were disclosed with sufficient transparency. Some banks did so, while others refused to make this disclosure. And even when they did, the TERs were often enormously high."
The birth of True Wealth: simplicity and transparency
We were convinced that what was needed was a digital, straightforward wealth management product where clients could quickly open an account and get started with wealth management, without the need for complex processes. Oliver emphasized, "The ability to open a test account and review the product before signing the contract was new. Our goal was to make wealth building as accessible and easy as possible for everyone."
True Wealth's development and milestones
True Wealth was founded ten years ago, and since then we have continued to evolve. We stayed lean and focused on improving the product and the user experience. Felix explained, "Interactive portfolio views, easy-to-understand asset classes, and science-based investment strategies were among True Wealth's founding principles. Disciplined rebalancing and passive investing set us apart from our competitors."
The future of True Wealth: focus on cost and quality
It's important for us to keep costs low, as they add up significantly over time. We will continue to focus on the passive investment approach with rules-based rebalancing to achieve optimal client returns over the long term. Our mission is to make wealth accumulation as easy as possible for everyone. We are proud of what we have accomplished and look forward to what is to come.
Do you have any questions or comments? Feel free to email Felix Niederer. See you next time!