“We too, are in the hospitality business. We cater to a specific clientele. We deliver a certain expectation of service, and we ensure our clients receive the greatest experience possible. It’s hospitality; our specialty just happens to be business and family advisory, not food and beverage.”

When sitting down with Danny Ritter and Tasso Lagios to discuss what made Richter not only survive but thrive as an independent advisory firm for the last 95 years, it’s clear that it is that their focus was and is placed solely on one area: the client, above all else.

“We work with business owners and their families to ensure that all their interests, including those of their business, are aligned”, says Richter’s Managing Partner, Tasso Lagios. “We are very careful in selecting the clients with whom we work. Rather than taking on any client, we invest in working alongside a specific clientele who demands superior expertise and a full suite of services that we’ve calibrated over the years to suit their unique needs.”

“The Richter Family Office is

one of the largest and oldest integrated

multi-family office service practices in Canada”

…Office Founder Danny Ritter

Who is this specific client that gets so much of their focus? Some of Canada’s most successful business owners, entrepreneurs, senior executives, and succeeding generations of business families.

In fact, Richter prides itself on being the niche service provider to business owners and business families, given that it is one of the only firms in Canada to offer both business advisory and family office services integrated under one all-encompassing umbrella.

“Our goal is to assist our clients to find success, to enable them to  pass their wealth on to the next generation or make an impact in and for the community, and our role is to ensure their business operations are maximizing their abilities to achieve  this,” says Ritter, a partner at the firm; who  started the multi-family office services team, now known as Richter Family Office, in the late 90s. Some 20-years later, it’s one of the largest and oldest integrated multi-family office service practices in Canada. “We want all our families to come on board for this    service,” he jokes -bearing in mind that this service is available for those who have a certain amount of investible assets to qualify.

Realistically, how does a firm survive generational shifts, transitions of leadership and an ever-changing business climate to thrive for almost a full century? By focusing on innovation and trust. Richter began as an accounting firm in 1926 but quickly adapted to the changing needs of its clients –at the time new immigrants to Canada who were setting up businesses in Montreal’s garment district to provide for their families – and from there to add tax, consulting, and risk management services to their service inventory.

When some of their clients began building significant wealth, these individuals turned to their Richter professionals, their most trusted advisors, to ask for honest advice on how to manage their money and the emotional aspects of navigating their families through their new realities.

Richter Managing Partner Tasso Lagios

Richter Managing Partner Tasso Lagios notes that Richter is a
client-centered practice

“We work with business

Owners and their families

to ensure that all their interests,

including those of their business, are aligned”

… Tasso Lagios

“Our clients trusted us with their business operations. It was only natural then that they’d seek our advice on how to manage their personal wealth too. These families wanted to avoid fee-heavy, non-transparent investment products (which are at times laden with conflict). As this demand kept growing, we decided to invest our resources to provide the unique services to satisfy these new personal needs,” says Ritter.

That was the moment that Richter’s service offerings really came full circle. Fast forward to today, not only does Richter advise business owners how to maximize operations and minimize taxes, on mergers and acquisitions, restructurings, cybersecurity and of course, audit and tax needs, but as the business owner builds wealth, they are able to leverage Richter services on everything from cashflow and lifestyle management, to investment portfolio and manager due diligence, will and estate planning, family governance and financial literacy for those that need it. The firm recently added a real estate advisory and an executive search function to its offerings and is planning to launch the concierge service for clients in 2022.

“For us, our clients are at the centre of all that we do. We advise on almost every facet of their lives; everything is under one roof. They don’t have to go elsewhere when all their needs are taken care of here,” says Lagios. “And when the inevitable happens, our clients are comforted in knowing that their children and grandchildren and their businesses are well-positioned and will be cared for, so that the next generation can continue the founder’s legacy and build wealth in their own right.”

In a very true sense this is a full circle moment for a firm that shows no signs of slowing its momentum – and already looking forward to the next 100 years of partnering with Canada’s next generation of successful business owners.

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