Former Jacksonville stockbroker Margaret “Mag” Black-Scott has expanded her West Coast investment firm to Jacksonville.
With former Jacksonville colleague Nancy Overton, Black-Scott set up an office of Beverly Hills Wealth Management, which she created in Beverly Hills, Calif., two years ago.
“We want to be in the right places where we do a very good job,” Black-Scott said in a telephone interview Friday.
“We are a pretty conservative firm and what I saw was back in the day when Nancy and I were first in the business, there was no question the firms looked out for the clients,” she said.
After Black-Scott retired from Morgan Stanley as vice chairwoman of global wealth management, she recalled those past years.
“I thought what it was like in the early days when I began in the business and thought there was no reason it can’t be like that again,” she said.
She said Beverly Hills Wealth Management can tap research and experts around the world and will provide a new platform to allow clients to closely monitor their accounts.
“Whether you need to stay in cash or stay invested, that is our job and we’ve got the opportunity to talk to all the smartest people I can think of and pass that information back to our clients,” she said.
Black-Scott said the business is primarily fee-based.
“We think that truly aligns our interest with that of our client,” she said.
She said for clients who want to be consulted on every single move: “We can do that.”
“When you work with any of the major firms, you are captive to the offerings of those major firms. You sell their products. When their products are unique and great, that’s fine,” she said.
However, a fee-based arrangement allows clients to access other products as well.
She said the assets are held by Fidelity Investments.
“We chose Fidelity because it is very, very important that we have the strongest name on the street.”
Fidelity Investments has more than $3.6 trillion in total assets under administration.
If a client wants his or her assets held by another firm, Black-Scott said that can be done.
“We do some outside custody,” she said. “We are here to take care of the client.”
Black-Scott said Jacksonville is the firm’s fifth location. The first four are in Beverly Hills, Sacramento, San Diego and Phoenix.
She expects to roll out offices in New York, Chicago and San Francisco, and possibly internationally.
She said the firm was looking for tenant space in Jacksonville and might use temporary offices until she and Overton decide what area of town is most convenient to clients.
Black-Scott was born and educated in England and earned her MBA at Jacksonville University.
Formerly known as Mag Black, she was a longtime resident of Jacksonville who ran Jacksonville’s Morgan Stanley Dean Witter office before being transferred in 1996 to run the Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co. office in Beverly Hills.
She was later promoted to direct its Western Division, one of four U.S. divisions, and retired as managing director and vice chairwoman of Morgan Stanley & Co.
In 2001, Black-Scott was in New York City and witnessed the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Her husband, Murray Black, died in March 2004 after a four-year illness. She married retired Air Force Col. David Scott, an Apollo astronaut who walked on the moon, in April 2005.
She returns regularly to Jacksonville, where she has family and is a member of the Jacksonville University board of trustees.
Black-Scott and Overton have known each other for decades, back to the days when she said just five female investment advisers operated in Jacksonville.
“We were the five musketeers,” she said.
Black-Scott and Overton worked together for a time in the Dean Witter Reynolds office.
“We became friends. We did similar types of business,” Black-Scott said. “Nancy is a conservative. She runs a conservative business and we have a lot of similarities. We stayed in touch over the years.”
Black-Scott said she has a lot of connections in Jacksonville, which was a reason for choosing the city for a location.
She said Beverly Hills Wealth Management also has a Public Agency Financial Advisory division.
Beverly Hills Wealth Management, known as a registered investment advisory firm serving high net-worth individuals, families and businesses, announced in May that it launched BHWM Maestro, a cloud-based dashboard for such advisory firms.
The firm said the software tool allows those firms and advisers to consolidate their operational, sales and compliance tools into one controlled, cloud-accessible environment.
“They can see everything, so they will see all the updates,” Black-Scott said of clients. “We are great believers in transparency and we are great believers in safety.”
Overton, whose title is vice president of Beverly Hills Wealth Management, began representing the Jacksonville office Oct. 8.
“We have been in business a long time together,” Overton said of Black-Scott.
“My focus is to help my clients to grow their hard-earned assets or assets they have worked very hard to accumulate, and keep them intact,” she said.
“I have a lot of clients who are pre-retirees or retirees and range from clients’ grandchildren in their early 20s to those in the 90s and anything in between.”
Overton’s biography on bhwm.com shows that before joining Beverly Hills Wealth Management, she was a financial adviser at Citigroup, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and most recently, BMG Financial/Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network.
Black-Scott said she returns to Jacksonville at least three times a year for the JU board of trustees meetings.
“This will increase my time in Jacksonville because we are committed to building that out,” she said.