From Family Squabbles to Retreat


After reading our ad in Shambhala Sun in 2003, a middle-aged couple from the San Francisco Bay Area contacted Abacus due to a number of financial issues with which they hoped to get more help. The husband of the two had inherited a family business along with three siblings, and there were conflicting views about which divisions of the business to retain and which to sell off. The wife hoped to retire from a day job that was no longer bringing her joy and creativity; she hoped to focus on writing a screenplay. Lastly, there were many different investment accounts held by various financial advisors who had originally been hired by the wife's parents, with no cohesive strategy or communication among them.
 
Abacus began by analyzing the business divisions, getting valuation opinions, and determining which had the best prospects for wealth preservation and growth going forward, and which could fetch a premium if sold. The two Abacus advisors assigned to this client helped to craft a strategy to convince the couple’s siblings to go along with the recommended sales, including writing letters to the siblings, and sharing our financial analyses.
 
As this was occurring, our Financial Planning Department crunched numbers to determine if the couple’s career-change goals were feasible, even if poor investment results ensued. With a couple of minor tweaks, we found that they were, and they were able to transition into their next career phases within a year.
 
Lastly, our Client Service Associates worked with the clients to consolidate a dozen investment accounts with three different advisors into one cohesive strategy, with only those strategies that still served their financial goals being retained. Our quarterly reports brought all of the assets together in an easy-to-understand format, so that the clients could focus on their passions rather than financial management.
 
By 2011, the wife’s first screenplay was completing production with a major movie studio, and the couple was heading  out on a three month retreat.