The Silicon Review
“Our profound access and work with business families, entrepreneurs and family offices worldwide provides us with first-hand access to and data from other global players and peers, which in turn enables benchmarking analysis as much as state-of-the-art implementation.”
In the same way, as the world has become truly connected, it also has become a lot more complex. Regulatory requirements in individual regions have increased, and cross-border activities for daily business and for family offices still remain restricted and have become more challenging. Therefore, it is not only the successful establishment of international structures and operations, including local and international talent, that matters, but also solid business plans for daily business streams across international organizations and borders.
Family Office Management Consulting (FOMC), being a truly global firm with consulting business in almost every part of the globe, has a strong experience from within and is able to assist businesses in their international activities and strategies – and this in regard to every aspect of daily business life; be it, hiring global and local talent, setting up cross-border and multi-jurisdictional structures, which thrive and stand out through their efficiency, up to creating and fostering a culture that is truly global and open-minded. The latter certainly also being an aspect that proves to be challenging. FOMC works with the various stakeholders that are involved and based in different places and help create hybrid international structures where decision-making and operational flow are guaranteed at any point in time.
FOMC provides independent and objective advice on a variety of family office aspects, including global structuring, governance, and infrastructure solutions, and performs in-depth reviews of existing family office set-ups worldwide.
We interviewed FOMC’s founder Corinna Schulthess Traumueller to know about how the famed consulting firm is helping family offices thrive across the globe. She also spoke about FOMC’s roadmap for the future. Read on for the excerpts from the interview.
Q. What was your motivation behind starting the company?
I was in the industry already for almost 10 years before starting Family Office Management Consulting (FOMC) and even in that time, which appears short in relative terms, a lot has happened and the family office industry has changed quite a bit. Today, I see this progress of back then as the jump start or the preparation phase for the developments that took place afterwards. So far, these past 10 years were unprecedented, at least in the family office sphere, with not only the COVID-19 crisis taking place, but also the fastest change ever when it comes to digitalization, technological advances, as well as globalization and everything that comes with it. We certainly had no idea about what was going to happen when we founded the firm back in 2009, amidst the global financial crisis, but I guess we had an intuition that something “big” was going to come and wanted not only to be a part of it but enable unprecedented growth and success for our clients – who are certainly outstanding individuals, trailblazers themselves and some of the most respected entrepreneurs of today’s times.
Q. What are the problems that family offices usually encounter? How do your services help address these problems?
The backbone of every family office are the human resources, and this equally applies to the management team, investment operations as much as on the family side itself. Determining how and when family members are involved in family office operations, if at all, is not an easy task and often requires a thorough thought process at the outset as well as the implementation of a solid governance structure thereafter. The same is the case for the investment and operational sides. Attracting and retaining highly-skilled talent, aligning interests with strong leaders at management level, and creating an incentive structure which fosters long-term partnerships and ultimately extraordinary success, is challenging, not only for family offices based in remote locations, but even in the large financial centers. At FOMC, we have recognized this need for customized search processes within a still highly opaque world, and have therefore developed a bespoken consulting approach, involving our partner firm Schulthess Zimmermann & Jauch early in the process with the aim to deliver an interwoven and multi-disciplinary consulting experience. We use our wide networks as much as our specialist know-how when it comes to compensation plans and incentive schemes.
Another challenge for family offices is the intransparent nature of the industry itself. There is no general market standard, neither when it comes to operations, governance or structures, nor on the investment side. Our profound access and work with business families, entrepreneurs and family offices worldwide provides us with first-hand access to and data from other global players and peers, which in turn enables benchmarking analysis as much as state-of-the-art implementation. The latter combined with continued out-of-the-box thinking results in trailblazing strategic work.
Q. Why are your services so important today? Could you give us some context?
We have established ourselves as a well-recognized niche player in the market. This position as well as our global reach, which is truly international – working equally and at any point in time, in Europe, as much as the States, Latin America, Asia and other regions – provides us with unprecedented insights and specialist know-how and expertise through best-practice application and trailblazing strategic work. Our clients gain access to our very own know-how pool which additionally thrives through the continuous work with other leaders and trailblazers across the globe who excel in their entrepreneurship as much as investment activities of all sorts. We support them in their strategic development as much as in the operational translation and execution, thereby aiming to think out-of-the-box and several steps ahead at any point in time.
Q. How do your services help new businesses and entrepreneurs?
Through our work with entrepreneurs and business families, we are heavily involved in pioneering work relating to new business ideas and start-ups. I mentor within the leAD Program where young entrepreneurs are supported and funded at an early stage.
The majority of family offices come from an entrepreneurial background and the intention is often to keep the entrepreneurial spirit alive. We at FOMC provide and coordinate access to direct investments, help develop original ideas and translate them into practice later on. We structure the investment vehicles as much as the operational side, select teams and resources, and therefore assist across the entire value chain.
Q. What does your company’s work culture entail?
A tremendous amount of openness and out-of-the-box thinking are pre-requisites to offer our outstanding consulting experience and to add value to our clients’ structures and develop pioneering strategies. In addition, as we are working truly international, a “culture” which is able to adapt to all regional culture is hereby essential. We further place a great emphasis on innovation and rely on a team that has multi-facetted skillsets.
Q. What is the company’s vision and ambition for the road ahead?
In all our consulting activities and work with clients, we aim to stay ahead of the curve and the market at all times. As much as our clients often are, we aim to be trailblazers and think out-of-the-box in order to establish state-of-the-art solutions. We also aim to work across generations and accompany the next generation of wealth owners and, for instance, recent tech entrepreneurs, as much as we work with the various generations of the traditional business families that have been around for decades and some of them, even centuries.
The Visionary Leader
Corinna Schulthess Traumueller, Founder
She founded Family Office Management Consulting in 2009 and continues to act as a senior advisor and the firm’s CEO. Corinna has more than 15 years of experience in working with business and wealth owners, in her current function as well as while previously heading up the UBS Family Office Advisory business globally. She and the firm overall have advised and continue to work with entrepreneurs of multiple generations, and have developed as well as continued to implement pioneering strategic plans for the “new generation” of tech and IT business owners, and are therefore essentially shaping the visionary ideas of today’s multifaceted investors. Corinna serves on a number of family boards and advisory committees of globally-renown entrepreneurs and business owners, some of them with a strong focus on venture and start-up investments in various regions. She is also a Partner and the Practice Leader for Family Business Advisory at Schulthess Zimmermann & Jauch Executive Search.