In a recent interview with Crain Currency, Steve Prostano, founder and chairman of The UHNW Institute, shared meaningful insights into the world of single-family offices (SFOs). With over four decades in wealth management and consultancy, Prostano’s path to founding The Institute is a compelling story of his desire to transform the industry.

At the core of Prostano’s vision is a recognition of the challenges faced by ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) families and single-family offices. Through interactions with industry leaders, Prostano discovered a critical gap in the traditional wealth management landscape. This realization motivated him to bring together fellow experts, initiating a conversation about the unaddressed needs of UHNW families and SFOs.

Key points during the interview:

  1. Identifying the Gap: Prostano’s journey started with a realization: existing financial service models failed to fully cater to the unique requirements of UHNW families and SFOs. This discovery led to the founding of the UHNW Institute, a venture with a mission to transform the wealth management model.


  1. A Mission of Empowerment: The UHNW Institute’s mission goes beyond traditional industry objectives. Through education, thought leadership and advocacy, Prostano and his team want to equip UHNW families and advisors with the knowledge and resources necessary to navigate the complexities of wealth management effectively.


  1. Addressing Today’s Challenges: As wealth management evolves, Prostano pinpoints key trends shaping the trajectory of SFOs. From transitioning to a “Wealth 3.0” mindset, to prioritizing talent development and reassessing risk management strategies, SFOs are confronted with both challenges and opportunities.


  1. What’s Next?: The Institute seeks to codify industry standards for identifying and delivering Integrated Family Wealth Management services. Elements of this initiative include defining key terms and concepts, developing rigorous benchmarks, outlining comprehensive guidelines, creating effective tools and assessments to evaluate conformance to accepted standards, and developing unique training programs to assist advisers and SFO executives in the delivery.


Prostano’s perspective highlights The UHNW Institute’s potential to shape change in the wealth management field. As the Institute continues to promote innovation and collaboration, the future of SFOs is full of promise and possibility.

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