Family Office Financial Services

Family office financial services are pivotal in managing affluent families’ and high-net-worth individuals’ wealth and financial affairs. With a primary focus on preserving and growing generational wealth, family office advisory firms tailor their strategies to align with each family’s unique goals and values, offering a comprehensive suite of advisory and administrative services beyond conventional wealth management.

What Are Family Offices in Finance?

At their core, family offices typically offer advisory services such as investment management, estate and tax planning, and risk management. They act as stewards of generational wealth, preserving and growing assets over time while facilitating the smooth transfer of wealth from one generation to the next.

There are various family offices, each with flexibility allowing them to address a wide array of financial complexities, from managing diverse investment portfolios to overseeing philanthropic endeavors and handling day-to-day financial administration.

One of the primary benefits of family offices is their ability to provide highly personalized financial advice and services, considering the specific values and objectives of the family. This customized approach distinguishes them from traditional wealth management firms, making family offices a trusted partner in navigating the intricate landscape of wealth preservation and growth. In essence, family offices in finance play a pivotal role in ensuring the long-term financial well-being and legacy of affluent families.

Understanding Family Offices

As we have determined the space that family offices fulfill, we will delve into the world of family offices, shedding light on their essential functions, challenges, and the diverse types of family offices that cater to the distinctive financial requirements of affluent households and family members.

1. What is a Family Office?

A family office is a dedicated and private wealth management organization that serves as a centralized entity responsible for overseeing and optimizing all aspects of the family’s financial affairs. Family offices are typically characterized by their discretion, tailored approach, and commitment to preserving and growing generational wealth and succession planning.

2. What Does a Family Office Do?

The primary function of a family office is to manage and coordinate various financial aspects of a family’s life. This includes investment management, wealth preservation, and growth strategies, as well as estate planning, tax optimization, and risk management. Family offices also handle administrative tasks like bill payment, financial reporting, and record-keeping.

Furthermore, they assist in the intergenerational transfer of the family wealth and often play a pivotal role in philanthropic initiatives, guiding the family’s charitable giving and impact investing endeavors. Their overarching goal is to provide a holistic and personalized approach to financial management that aligns with the unique values and objectives of the family they serve.

3. The Many Disciplines of a Family Office

Family offices encompass a broad range of disciplines and expertise to address the multifaceted needs of their clients. These may include family office services such as:

• Investment Management: Developing and executing investment strategies across diverse asset classes to achieve long-term financial goals.

• Estate Planning: Structuring and optimizing the transfer of assets to heirs while minimizing tax implications.

• Tax Planning and Compliance: Ensuring that the family’s tax liabilities are managed efficiently and in compliance with relevant regulations.

• Risk Management: Identifying and mitigating financial risks, such as market volatility or unexpected events.

• Philanthropic Services: Advising on charitable giving strategies and managing philanthropic initiatives and foundations.

• Concierge Services: Handling day-to-day financial tasks, from paying bills to managing household staff.

• Legal and Compliance: Ensuring that the family’s financial activities adhere to legal and regulatory requirements.

• Family Governance: Establishing governance structures and policies to facilitate effective decision-making within the family.

• Reporting and Performance Measurement: Providing regular financial reporting and performance evaluation.

4. Key Takeaways

Family offices are characterized by their personalized approach, aligning their strategies with the unique goals and values of each family they serve. Their expertise spans various disciplines, ensuring that all financial aspects of their clients’ lives are well-managed and optimized for long-term success.

What is Behind the Recent Rise in Family Offices?

The recent surge in the establishment and prominence of family offices can be attributed to several key factors. As wealth accumulates, families often seek more comprehensive and customized financial services beyond what traditional wealth management firms can provide.

Additionally, the growing complexity of financial markets and regulations has necessitated specialized expertise in areas like tax optimization, estate planning, and risk management. Family offices are well-equipped to navigate these intricate landscapes, offering tailored solutions to protect and grow wealth effectively.

The rise of technology has also played a role, as digital tools and data analytics enable family offices to manage investments, track the performance of capital markets better, and make informed decisions in real time. This technological advancement has made family offices more efficient and capable of meeting the evolving needs of their clients. The added benefits of cybersecurity also enable advisory firms managing the family offices to maintain the confidentiality of their clients’ information.

Why Create a Family Office?

Establishing a family office is a strategic decision driven by a variety of compelling reasons. One of the primary motivations is the desire for personalized and comprehensive wealth management of the family’s assets. Affluent families often seek to go beyond the one-size-fits-all approach of traditional financial institutions and instead opt for tailored solutions that align with their unique financial goals, values, and aspirations.

Family offices bring together a team of experts who specialize in various financial disciplines, enabling families to navigate these complexities effectively and make informed decisions that enhance the preservation and growth of their wealth.

Furthermore, the desire for control and autonomy over financial affairs is a significant factor. Family offices empower wealthy families to actively participate in the decision-making process actively, ensuring that their values and preferences are reflected in every financial choice. This level of control can be particularly appealing to those with diverse family business interests, philanthropic goals, or a desire to establish a lasting legacy.

Family offices also offer the benefit of continuity and intergenerational wealth management for future generations. They facilitate the smooth transfer of wealth from one generation to the next, ensuring that the family’s financial legacy endures. By creating a formalized structure for wealth management, families can mitigate potential conflicts and challenges that may arise during the transfer process.

We support family offices with global transactions and advise on US direct investment, mergers & acquisitions.

The Importance of a Family Office

Family offices serve as trusted advisors and administrators, offering tailored solutions to preserve, grow, and transfer generational wealth. The importance of family offices lies in their ability to provide a comprehensive and personalized approach to wealth management, addressing not only financial needs but also aligning strategies with the family’s values and long-term objectives. This personalized touch, combined with their expertise in various financial disciplines, makes family offices indispensable for those seeking to navigate the complexities of substantial wealth effectively.

The Process of Interfacing with Family Offices

Interfacing with family offices involves establishing a close working relationship between the family and the office’s team of professionals. This process typically begins with a thorough assessment of the family’s financial goals, values, and unique requirements. The family office team then collaboratively develops a tailored strategy encompassing investment management, estate planning, tax optimization, and more. Effective communication and transparency are vital throughout this engagement, ensuring that the family’s objectives are met while maintaining a strong partnership built on trust and shared objectives.

The Challenges of Dealing with Family Offices

While family offices offer numerous advantages, they also present unique challenges. One significant challenge is the cost of establishing and maintaining a family office, which can be substantial, particularly for single-family offices. Additionally, finding and retaining top-tier talent with the specialized skills required for comprehensive wealth management can be a challenge.

Maintaining confidentiality and ensuring a smooth transition of responsibilities in multi-generational families can also pose difficulties. Effective governance and conflict resolution mechanisms are essential to address potential disagreements and ensure the long-term success of the family office.

What Does the Future Hold for Family Offices?

The future of family offices appears promising as they adapt to changing dynamics in the financial world. They are likely to embrace technology and data analytics to enhance investment strategies and operational efficiency.

Moreover, there’s a growing trend toward alternative investments, such as sustainable and impact investing, which family offices are well-positioned to lead. As regulations evolve, family offices will need to stay compliant and adaptable. Collaboration among family offices, particularly in multi-family offices, may become more prevalent to pool resources and share expertise. In essence, the future holds opportunities for family offices to continue evolving and delivering value to their clients.

What Type of Family Office is Right For You?

Choosing the right type of family office depends on the family’s specific needs and preferences:

• Multi-Family Office: Ideal for families seeking shared resources and cost efficiencies by partnering with other families. Multi-family offices offer a range of services and expertise.

• Single Family Office: Suitable for ultra-high-net-worth families who desire complete control and customization of their financial management. Single-family offices provide a highly personalized approach but may come with higher costs.

• Virtual Family Office: A virtual family office combines the benefits of a family office’s expertise and services without the physical infrastructure. It can be cost-effective and flexible for families who don’t require a dedicated physical office.

How Asena Can Help

Asena is able to provide turn-key wealth management, financial reporting, and compliance support for families that do not have the desire or capacity to operate their own family office. We have supported a number of family offices that have invested and moved in and out of the US over the last decade.

1. Our Expertise

At Asena, our experienced staff understands the need to have a global outlook and an organizational structure that accommodates the needs of a globally mobile family. Our team also consults on family office tax advisory, compliance, financial reporting, and administration.

In addition to the consulting services provided to family offices, we also offer services for families that do not have the liquidity or the desire to manage a family office on their own. We also provide non-financial administrative support for global families who require assistance with the responsibility for all aspects of their family office to an outsourced team independent from their investment advisors.

2. Setting Up a Family Office

The dedicated staff at Asena can set up a family office for the high-net-worth families who require our services. We recommend a consultation with one of our specialized consultants, who will perform the necessary due diligence to set up a family office that will cater to the family’s values, objectives, and goals.

3. Key Advantages of Working With Asena Advisors

Affluent families who engage Asena Advisors have the benefit of dealing with an organizational structure with dedicated and competent staff members. We also focus on transparency and communication with clients while maintaining the family’s confidentiality.


• How much should a family office cost?

The cost of establishing and operating a family office can vary significantly depending on several factors, including the complexity of the family’s financial affairs, the scope of services required, and the type of family office (single-family, multi-family, or virtual).

• How do family offices make money?

One primary source of income for providers is through the fees they charge for their services, which can include asset management fees, financial planning fees, and administrative fees. Family offices may also earn income through investment management, where they receive a percentage of the assets they manage as a performance-based fee. Additionally, some family offices may invest alongside their clients, sharing in the returns generated from those investments.

• Is a family office an investment company?

While family offices often handle investment management as a core function, they are not typically considered investment companies in the traditional sense. Investment companies are typically publicly traded entities that pool capital from various investors to invest in a diversified portfolio of securities. Family offices, on the other hand, are private organizations established to manage the financial affairs of a specific family or a small group of families. They focus on a broader range of financial services beyond investment management, including estate planning, tax optimization, and administrative tasks.

• How much money do you need to start a family office?

The capital required to start a family office can vary widely based on factors such as the family’s wealth size, the complexity of their financial needs, and the type of family office they intend to establish. However, it’s crucial to conduct a thorough cost-benefit analysis to determine the feasibility and cost-effectiveness of establishing a family office based on the family’s specific financial situation and objectives.


If you would like more information about our Family Office Financial Services,

refer to our Contact Us section to the right.

Jean-Dré Tombisa

Peter Harper