In the world of wealth and asset management, and the private markets in general, there is a noticeable communication gap between generations.
The next generation of owners–people between the ages of 18 and 25–are prolific consumers of digital content, from Reddit threads to Spotify podcasts. For many businesses, that means adopting new technologies, broadening offerings, and finding modern ways to effectively serve clients.
In this in-person episode of The Modern CFO, host Andrew Seski visits with Anthony Pastore, Head of Broadcast Communications at UBS, to chat about what his firm is doing to bridge that generation gap in communicating and investing, the role that social media and video plays in staying relevant and ahead of the competition, and the importance of having a digital approach to maintaining the massive amount of wealth transferring to the next generation in the decade to come.
Please note that the transcript is AI-generated and may contain errors. The content in the podcast is not intended as investment advice, and is meant for informational and entertainment purposes only.
[00:00:00] Andrew Seski: I'm Andrew Seski and this is The Modern CFO Podcast. I'm thrilled today to be joined by Anthony Pastore, head of broadcasting at UBS. We're in New York. We're here together. It's a rare opportunity for me and I'm thrilled about the conversation that we're gonna have today. Anthony, thank you so much for being here.
[00:00:25] Anthony Pastore: Andrew, I'm honored to be here with you and it's very rare for me to be on the other side of the table of, podcast and video interviews. Usually, I'm the one asking the questions so I actually said to my team today as I was preparing to sit with you, I was like, I'm a little nervous. I'm not used to being interviewed. I'm usually the interviewer so I wouldn't be surprised if at some point I start turning the microphone to you and saying, "Andrew, I have a few questions for you as well" so hopefully, you're prepped for that.
[00:00:49] Andrew Seski: I'm happy to.
[00:00:51] Anthony Pastore: Anyway, I'm really happy to be with you. This is great.
[00:00:53] Andrew Seski: Excellent. Well, I think the beginning of our conversation should probably start around your early career and why we're talking today. There's a huge gap in the wealth management and asset management world between generations. We are all consuming media in a different way, which is why I'm glad to be using this medium. And I'd love to learn from you as the head of broadcasting at UBS to explain what some of the brightest minds in the world are doing to bridge that gap. So, we have a ton to cover and I hope that it's a useful lesson for a bunch of CFOs who also have to communicate across a bunch of different cohorts of people. Whether they're investors or they're your C-suite or they're part of your team, having strong communication flows in a really technical way or a technical area like finance is just invaluable when it comes to senior leadership so.
[00:01:44] Anthony Pastore: Yeah, I agree with that, by the way. And it's interesting because, and once we get into it, I'll talk more about it, but I think one of the interesting things about a job like what you and I do is we have to always be thinking, you know, five steps ahead of everybody else but it's really hard to do considering the competition in the media space. But what I think is interesting is we're talking about it, like I'm sitting in a wealth management firm at UBS and that's unique to our industry specifically — to have content like podcasts and virtual events and videos and internally for our employees and externally for anybody who wants to get a glimpse of what's going on and the thought leadership from this the UBS side. But, yeah. I know I'm going off on tangents here but I know you and I are both thinking similarly like what how much competition there isn't. How do you keep on top of it and stay relevant, especially for somebody who's sitting in a CFO seat?
[00:02:37] Andrew Seski: Right. And the CFO doesn't typically get called upon for many any of the — I always say on the podcast, if you want to hear the vision of the company, you go watch the Bloomberg interview with the CEO. If you want to hear how finance is actually, you know, a key role in how that innovation is created, you come back to the podcast and listen to The Modern CFO and you listen to people like Anthony who are able to share insights from, you know, unique people who have a lot of sway into how companies are financed. So, strategic finance can take forms and a lot of different ways. We were just laughing about how both of us found ourselves in this building but neither came from purely financial roles like at wealth management firms.
[00:03:20] Anthony Pastore: That's right. Yeah. And I guess that's a sort of a good segue. So and as you were asking, my background is pretty colorful. I kind of came up and I say this to all the younger people who start now. I'm in my late forties. I consider myself a true Gen X-er listening to grunge music because I was depressed and sad wearing my flannels in the nineties. But coming out of college, I went to school for I was a bit of a Renaissance man, as I always say. I studied theater, I studied business administration, and I also studied speech and communications. And my father looked at me and said, "What are you gonna do with that?" I said, "I don't know but I'll figure it out." And back in those days, you know, I was starting to look for full-time work in, say, 1997. It was the tech boom was just starting. Companies were hiring and, as we know with Gen X, there were fewer of us on the planet so there were a lot more jobs than there were people to fill them. So, I got a job working early days at Smith Barney. RIP Smith Barney. What a great firm and I still obviously work with a lot of people from those days who are now here at UBS and other firms. But Smith Barney hired me to work on a stock plan services desk, and I was helping Bank of America employees exercise stock options that they were granted by being full-time employees. And I learned a lot about the business but somewhere along the way, I met a woman who said, "You'd be really good for our radio station." I said, "You have a radio station here?" And she said, "We do." And it was called at the time "Radio FCN," which stand stood for Radio Financial Consultant Network — before we started calling them financial advisors. I interviewed and the my guy who the gentleman who became my boss for the next decade said to me, "Do you have any experience with talking about finance on any kind of a medium like this?" and it was only internal content just to the employees. I said, "No." I said, "But I have a theater background and I can talk about anything." He said, "You're hired." So, it got me in the door and I said, "Dad, thanks for paying for my education." But boy, did I learn a lot. And then through the course of that, I left I went to Morgan Stanley through the joint venture after the financial crisis after they acquired the Smith Barney Division. And long story short, I got an opportunity to come to UBS to build out their podcast infrastructure, which we had going since I started here in 2012. And then fast forward to during the pandemic and I started building out a video platform, which I'm sure we'll get into in a minute. But so my background is really interesting but, you know, by osmosis, I've learned an intense amount of information by sitting across the table from some of the smartest men and women in the industry.
[00:05:47] Andrew Seski: So, I want to dive into that. One of the commonalities that we definitely share from an expertise level and from a podcasting level is I joined finance companies early on, now technology, and my competencies have been very disparate. And becoming a generalist or an expertise, there are roles for you in firms with cultures that you align with. So, I think that's gonna be something really important to the next generation. And we're gonna jump into generational wealth in the next segment here in just a moment but.
[00:06:20] Anthony Pastore: Huge topic. Huge topic.
[00:06:21] Andrew Seski: Alignment of interest right now is really important, so it's nice to know that, you know, whether you're Gen X through Gen Z, there is some place for your expertise. And I think it's a really powerful notion, especially when the world seems more black and white. There is a ton of gray when it comes to leveraging your skill sets at a firm that you align with and you're gonna be happy working for.
[00:06:43] Anthony Pastore: I think that's one of the more surprising things. It certainly surprised me but I think it surprised a lot of younger people coming into this industry 'cause a lot of them went to school for econ or for finance pure play. They realize when they come in all the wealth of different kinds of talent that it takes to run a company of this size. Anything in this kind of bulge bracket, you've got people who are marketing people. You've got people who come from agency side where they're running, you know, all kinds of ads for advisors for the firm. They're doing animations for videos, they're doing graphics, they're doing podcasts. They're doing all kinds of really interesting, very creative stuff. And I think that's something that became that has become very surprising for a lot of people who come into the firm or the industry at a college who think it's gonna be all, you know, CPI, PPI, and, you know, and unemployment data the first Friday of every month. So, I think that's been a sort of a nice surprise for them is like, wow, look at all the diversity that we have of talent at a firm this size.
[00:07:42] Andrew Seski: Back to your career for a moment. So, you started, you know, a theater major, then your first job was Morgan Stanley.
[00:07:50] Anthony Pastore: Smith Barney.
[00:07:51] Andrew Seski: Smith Barney.
[00:07:51] Anthony Pastore: Stock plant services.
[00:07:53] Andrew Seski: Stock plant services.
[00:07:54] Anthony Pastore: That's right.
[00:07:54] Andrew Seski: And then take me through that iteration to UBS.
[00:07:57] Anthony Pastore: Sure. Yeah. So, as I said, my first job doing stock plant services. I did that for about six months and then I moved over to do more of a job where I was talking directly to clients. Smith Barney had a checking account that they called the FMA, the financial management account. And what I did was take calls from clients. I gave them account balances. I told them what was going on in their accounts. I gave them stock quotes. Okay. For those listening in who are under the age of 40, you couldn't just get a stock like you sitting across from me. You couldn't just get a stock quote by going to a computer or a phone. You had to literally look at the newspaper at the end of the day so we would get them on the computer and give them to the clients over the phone so that was really fun.
[00:08:35] Andrew Seski: In my defense, I get a physical Wall Street Journal still every day.
[00:08:39] Anthony Pastore: Wow. You're old school. That's a rare thing. I don't even have that anymore. But then when as I said, one of the women that I was working with, I sort of skipped a job. I wound up working on a sales desk where we were creating SmithBarney.com, which was our first website. This is going back. This is like maybe around 2000, year 2000. And that's where I really got to know financial advisors in a great way because I was talking to them directly when the previous role, I was talking to their clients. Now, I was working directly with advisors and I got to learn a lot about what goes into the day-to-day of an advisor's business? It is not for the faint of heart. You know, you're talking to clients who may be happy or not happy on a, you know, from call to call, sometimes the same call. So, you're always having to be on your game as an FA so I always thanked them for what they do. I remember one of my jobs in when I was working there, my boss put a sign up and said "The advisors pay the bills" and that was a constant reminder to me being a home office person to say, I would not be sitting here if the advisors weren't out there working their tails off, you know, to generate clients and assets and things like that. So, but then from there, one of my closest friends saw an opening in the podcast studio at Smith Barney and said, "This is perfect for you." So, it was really a perfect evolution for me. But most of my years in the business have been on this side of the microphone, you know, on the media side.
[00:10:04] Andrew Seski: So, what have you seen that has been successful that CFOs could leverage to talk to different — like you said that you got really involved with the financial advisors. That gave you a certain level of respect. And then, leadership said this is where the bills are paid and that influenced you.
[00:10:21] Anthony Pastore: It did.
[00:10:22] Andrew Seski: How have you seen that, you know, that same lesson iterated across different types of people that you talk to every single day? Because I've seen some amazing clips of UBS content that you interview experts in a ton of different arenas and I highly recommend that everyone check out.
[00:10:39] Anthony Pastore: Thank you for that.
[00:10:40] Andrew Seski: All the content that Anthony does 'cause it's really these interviews are fantastic.
[00:10:43] Anthony Pastore: Thank you. I'm learning a lot even today.
[00:10:45] Andrew Seski: But what are some of the lessons that you've learned across maybe even just the last decade of how to communicate with different types of people? Because I think that's a huge challenge for CFOs today.
[00:10:54] Anthony Pastore: Yeah, it is. You know, and that's and that — you know what, Andrew? That's such a really good and I think it's a really important question. I think it's just a matter of — you know, I do a lot of prep for any show so our show is called UBS Trending. That's our public-facing show where we interview — they're 10 minute shows by design and we're gonna talk about why we think that's helpful for the younger generation in a little bit. But I think, you know, it's a good way to get somebody sitting at the table with me for a 10-minute show where we could talk about a topic, whether it's talking about inflation and we're talking about small-cap stocks, we're talking about our CIO thought leadership, whatever the case may be. But part of my prep is to not only look at something that they either they've written that I can glean some factoids out of — I do my own prep from, you know, various websites — but I also talk to them if I'd never met them before to understand maybe a little bit more about how they tick. What's their cadence? What are they thinking? I ask them really pointed questions and they're just personal questions. How was your day? Where do you live? What's going on in your life these days? You know, and they're not like heavy, deep conversations but it's like, oh, I live in Florida. The weather's great. And I get a sense of, okay, they're super friendly. We can have a great conversation. What makes you tick? Do you have kids, grandkids? Are you married? Are you not married? You know? And I don't delve into the personal without them opening the door to that, if that makes any sense. You try to be reallyccareful about that. But I think for CFOs it's a tricky game to kind of find out who a person is to learn the best ways to communicate with them. And sometimes, it takes more than one or two meetings. You just kind of have to really sit down with the person and understand their worldview, if that makes any sense. What makes them tick? What's important to them? You know? What is it about their job that they love or that they would change? And that really tells you so much about a person.
[00:12:36] Andrew Seski: I think that might be the perfect segue into a personal definition of a modern CFO because it sounds like you're saying the difference between somebody on the financial team versus the chief financial officer is somebody who's got a really healthy mix of IQ and EQ.
[00:12:50] Anthony Pastore: Exactly. Exactly. I think that's a, yeah, please expand more on that because I know we talked about this just a couple days ago on the phone and I was really intrigued by that idea of the two — they don't necessarily have to oppose each other. They can work together.
[00:13:02] Andrew Seski: Yeah. A lot of my episodes have covered the fact that there's a hypervigilance on how teams collaborate really effectively. We've had guests who have been, you know, served, you know, they've served us in a military or naval capacity where their entire job was focused on team-based collaboration and that can be really powerful. And it's a nice kind of way or a framework to view the chief financial officer job in general because it feels like you are just managing different types of people but in reality, it's how different cogs of teams work together, which you have to be, you know, very understanding on the individual level. But because of that, then you have to also have the next level up, which is how those people are gonna interact with each other then, the acumen of the entire world of finance and then from there, you have to be able to direct to those types of people, which I'm not sure if you've noticed this there occasionally is an ego or two.
[00:14:05] Anthony Pastore: Every once in a while you come across one and then when I say that facetiously. Of course, there has to be some level of it, right? I think there's —
[00:14:12] Andrew Seski: But if you think of that skillset, that is —
[00:14:14] Anthony Pastore: That's right.
[00:14:14] Andrew Seski: It's pretty multifaceted.
[00:14:16] Anthony Pastore: It is. You know, and one of the things I think that has helped me in — you know, for many years it was just myself and one other gentleman, Dan Cassidy, who runs our podcast studio and it was just the two of us for a really long time just doing podcasts and we were a small little team. But as the video started to become a reality, we had to expand the team because you have to bring on producers and directors and technical people who can run video side of the business. And all of a sudden, my team was going from two people to three to all of a sudden we had, you know, seven or eight of us and I was really nervous at first, thinking, "Oh my gosh! I've never run a team of this size. What do I do?" And I said, you know, "I'm just gonna do what I continue to do. I'm gonna just be a human being. I'm gonna check in with them, have a little humor." I think humor is so important, not yuck-yuck humor, and you don't wanna be obviously inappropriate in your humor. But having a little fun talking about a TV show that everybody's been watching, you know, if there's a Netflix show that's really popular. Hey, everybody watching Wednesday on Netflix or some great documentary or The Last of Us or something? They'll go, "Oh, yeah." And then everybody starts talking and it becomes this collaborative team feeling. And just those little moments, they don't have to be these long, drawn-out planned things, just those little moments. They humanize you as the leader or in this case as the CFO and they see you as a real person but they still have respect for you 'cause they see that you're trying to connect with them and then you show your leadership skills when it comes to getting the job done and they look to you to do that. But I do think being a human being means everything and never condescend to people ever, ever, ever. Even if they've done the worst thing in the world, you figure out how can we make this better? Because I've had bosses that just kind of come at you and it just strips you of your confidence and then you feel like you have to build it again and it takes a long time. Just be there for them. That's what our jobs are.
[00:16:04] Andrew Seski: Let's focus on humor because I think we're talking to kind of almost workplace culture, which will segue into how we think about multi-generational family wealth. And then, what I am really interested to hear is about the one thing you feel is underestimated in the world today. But I know that we can kind of merge all of these topics together but.
[00:16:27] Anthony Pastore: I think we can.
[00:16:27] Andrew Seski: So, I mean, the idea that humor has a place in the workplace in general is not horribly unique but it sounds like humanizing your workforce is a 2023 requirement.
[00:16:41] Anthony Pastore: I think so. You know, and look. I come from a generation where — and I was just literally talking about this with a friend of mine who's not in finance but in my age range. I said I remember coming up when you were just expected to do things. Nobody ever really held your hand and took you to a place. They just said, "Do it" and you sink or swim on your own. And I remember thinking, that's not really good for me. I want somebody to just kind of at least kind of be there for me if I need help. Not just like, oh, it's fail pass or fail but your choice, however you make that happen. I think there's a nice — and then obviously there's people who now complain that the younger generations all they have is handholding and everybody's like coddling them. I think finding that middle of the ground, the, you know, like middle-ground approach is the right way to do it in my personal experience because being thrown into the deep end of the pool, I learned a lot but I was also scared to death and I hated the idea of having to make mistakes. I was afraid to ask questions 'cause I thought they were gonna look down on me. I should know more. But I never wanted anybody to feel that I'm gonna just hold their hand and walk them through their day. Like you gotta also figure some things out on your own. But that's being a really, I think, effective leader is finding that blend and throwing humor in there is just one way again I think I'll just repeat this and I'll probably say this a lot, it's the humanizing factor, showing them that you're a real person, too. You're not just somebody who's, you know, running a team or running a company as the case may be. But, you know, it's a really, really tough place, especially for those of us who've come up in the older days when we were made to sink or swim completely on our own. I think there's probably a lot of people out there listening to this who might be nodding their heads and saying, yeah, I had similar experience to that myself. But when we were talking in our prep, you said, what's the one, what's the question again? What's the one thing that we should be doing more of?
[00:18:30] Andrew Seski: Underestimated in the world today.
[00:18:31] Anthony Pastore: Underestimated in the world. I think it's compassion. That's always my answer. I find myself being sort of empathetic towards people's journeys. And I use the word "worldview." I think understanding where people are coming from and it's not just at work. It's in life, too. You know, you meet new people all the time who are not necessarily sitting in the cubicle next to you. They are sitting in a bar next to you or in a restaurant or at a museum or, you know, you're meeting people through friends or whatever the case may be. You have to have compassion for people. You have no idea what their day was like or what their life was like and you can't assume anything. Nobody's like you or me, Andrew. We are two individual people who just happen to come together for this great podcast that you're doing and we have found I think a good rapport and energy between us. But it doesn't mean I know who you are or what your experiences are. Just be compassionate and just be open to learning who people are. I think there's not enough of that in the world and that's not politicizing anything. That's a whole other discussion that we're gonna leave out of this podcast. But I think in the world, if we had more compassion, I think you'd see more understanding and people seeing, feeling like they're being heard and just understood, you know? And then I think people could succeed more.
[00:19:36] Andrew Seski: Well, I mean, that's why I wanted to do this podcast in general because from the CFO seat, compassion during market cycles that are very easy, you can see it in the private markets with the benefits of the types of things that coddle what I think entrepreneurs who have been through multiple market cycles would say, you know, that is just a result of a time of feast, you know? This is not reality. We go through market cycles and CFOs, you know, today, every headline that we see about major layoffs it's, you know, humanizing everyone. And having compassion and empathy in the world of finance is a hugely underappreciated conversation so that's why I wanna have it.
[00:20:15] Anthony Pastore: Hundred percent agree, yeah.
[00:20:17] Andrew Seski: And it the same operates in succession planning as you were describing that kind of compassionate yet humorous yet needing to be respected mindset, I was thinking of some of the patriarchal people who I know who run family businesses or are just heads of family or matriarchal and it's the same thing. It's a level of respect but also an acumen for understanding how to communicate, especially around things that are horribly complex like ownership around equities or, you know, alternatives, which actually I think is an interesting point for UBS, which I think the one of the things that I think UBS personally does really, really well is communicate on complex topics, especially to advisors. And I know that we have a lot of advised a lot of family offices who look to the street for a lot of advice, trying to get a good pulse. And this is another reason why these mediums are so important 'cauwe we can do deeper dives on all of this too, which is awesome.
[00:21:15] Anthony Pastore: That's right. One of the things that I think is one of the many things I think I really I'm a personally I'm a big fan of the culture here at UBS. You know, back in the days at when I was at Smith Barney, the culture there was, I mean, it was the older days. It was pre — let's talk about it — it was pre-9/11. It was pre-financial crisis. It was kind of a different time. We were looking for different things. They called the advisors financial consultants, not advisors. It wasn't about wealth management as an advice business. It was about, you know, selling products to clients, not that that was a bad thing. That's just what we were doing at the time. Well, not me, but that's what our business was about. Then, we moved into this idea of holistic wealth management and that's what we continue to do today, which I think is a really important thing to do. We have, you know, our advisors here at UBS are given this framework called UBS Wealth Way and it gives them five questions to ask instead of saying to your client, "Hey, what mutual fund are you interested in?" They might be a doctor or a lawyer sitting there. I don't know. But we ask them questions like what's important to you? Who's in your family? What do you wanna leave behind? What do you wanna do with your money? You know, do you have any particular charities that interest you? Who are you gonna go grab an ice cream with when you're, you know, 75 years old? So, things that make them think. And then, our advisors go, "Okay, great. Now, I can put your portfolio together." But I think that's the changing business. And one of the things I like about the culture here is it comes from that side of thinking more about the client and his or her life or their family's lives from different angles. And it's not just about what, you know, what ETFs do you want in your portfolio. And I think that's what I feel really passionate about in the business and especially the UBS culture. It is very collaborative here. My colleagues are great. Everybody works together. It's that's how you get things done more effectively, too, and that's a powerful thing.
[00:22:57] Andrew Seski: So, it sounds like there are evergreen values. But one of the topics I wanted to cover today, too, is the role of technology at the firm. We have all been playing with ChatGPT and all of the modern AI tools. It's been exciting but the world of wealth management, which is slightly different than asset management. Wealth management is more of the holistic picture of not just your assets but liability. The full picture of philanthropy as well.
[00:23:24] Anthony Pastore: Absolutely. Yep.
[00:23:25] Andrew Seski: This is slightly separate from being just a fiduciary. But the interesting aspect is that there's been one of the podcast guests I had was David Magerman, who was one of the early engineers at Renaissance Technologies. And, you know, the idea of using AI and machine learning in algorithmic trading has been around for a decent amount of time and algorithms get refined and refined. But and there are only a subset of people on the planet who can do it really, really well consistently. One of the things I'm interested in is just where you see the future of technology from every aspect of the firm because, you know, we're in a modern studio today. The video aspect of communicating effectively is massive in this space. Drives a lot of, you know, a lot of views and it's easier to engage with people today than ever before. But also, we need to probably think about how tech could integrate across every business sector. So, curious from your perspective what that looks like. What it looks like for the future of your role and maybe what it looks like across some of the different areas across all of these different floors in this building at UBS here.
[00:24:35] Anthony Pastore: Yeah. You know, I think, Andrew, probably I'll say something that most people will agree with is that the pandemic really taught us a lot about the importance of technology. That was evident in sales of computers and devices that people needed to outfit in their homes but also the infrastructure that firms like ours and yours and everybody else's had or needed to upgrade to make sure that people could log on remotely and have a seamless experience. And I think we learned so much from that about how important technology really is in our day-to-day lives. And especially for, and again, speaking from a wealth management perspective, for advisors who were all of a sudden working in their home offices, which they'd probably never done before. Everything was in an office. Clients were in front of you as close as you and I are sitting right now. They knew that they had to figure out how to do a business from home and they had to have access to all their systems, their trading systems, all of the ways to get client information, portfolio account values, etc., households. And, you know, thankfully, it worked. And, you know, they had been already as a firm UBS was thinking about the technology component and how can we make it better just in the in-office experience. And thankfully, they had foresight to say we should have a remote experience as well so by the time the pandemic happened, they were ready, which was welcome because if all of a sudden the firm just had to shut down because you couldn't log on from home, that's a game changer, you know, and that could put anybody out of business. So, I think that alone, just like the idea of remote and virtual working and seamless ways to do that from the office to home, is a game changer. On my side, on the media side, the video side of my business only really came about in earnest because of the pandemic. We knew as a firm if we're gonna reach people during this time, we need to have video. We need to have a steady stream of videos being created and not just Zoom webcast. We're gonna elevate this on a level that no one is doing. And so, we're lucky that we had people who I was reporting to at the time who had the foresight to say, yes. What's the vision? Let's build a beautiful newsroom studio. No other firms are doing this. Let's blow it out of the water. And I remember during the pandemic and I was home when we were working with our particular vendor, while they were building our physical studio here in our offices in Midtown, they set up a virtual studio for me in my New York City apartment in my second bedroom, which, you know, anybody who lives in New York City knows a second bedroom is either a guest room, an office, a storage room, or all the above, or the gym. So, I had — and it was all the above for me. And they put in a green screen and cameras and lights and I was remotely working with a director who was sitting in Washington, DC and a producer who was in Chicago and a, you know, an engineer who was sitting in Las Vegas. And that for me was the start of us migrating into the new level of technology when it came to media. And now, shooting in a studio and doing shows like that, now we're looking to what's the social media aspect here? How much can we be doing there? TikTok is everywhere. Every single person in — certainly under the age of 25, between the ages of 18 and 25, are on TikTok or at least viewing it so how do we reach that audience? And it's continually looking to see where that technology should go. Now, of course, in financial services, we have a lot of regulations and there's a lot of people who say, yeah, you can't do that just yet, you know? So, would I love to be on TikTok doing three minute videos with our best, smartest thought leaders and our chief investment officer? Yes, of course. But we'll find ways around that. But I think technology never stops. It's always continually, you know, evolving and so, it's a matter of us keeping up or at least finding ways to, you know, to chase after it.
[00:28:08] Andrew Seski: So, the CFOs who are listening have to then just decide that there are different mediums. Yes, they have to learn them. They have to be communicative in different mediums that they're gonna be pushed outside their comfort zone to do.
[00:28:22] Anthony Pastore: For sure.
[00:28:22] Andrew Seski: And it can be a huge part of a strategy because you need the right people to deploy the right strategies no matter what seat you're in.
[00:28:30] Anthony Pastore: A hundred percent. And for a CFO who's also looking at the bottom line, if you're a, you know, in a company who wants to really ramp up media content, whether it's videos or podcasts or both, having an in-house team like we've developed here is a huge cost savings because third-party vendors to do production are very expensive. I mean, they do a lot of work. Let's not mince words. But it's an expensive venture. And just by having our video studio opened last year, we saved the firm, you know, millions of dollars just by not having to outsource, you know, the work to someone else. We were able to do it all in house with our in-house staff. So, that's, you know, from a financial perspective, it's a really smart thing to do and, I mean, you know, imagine if you had to outsource your podcast every single time by using somebody else's studio or someone else's equipment. It doesn't pay. You know you're doing it all in your own office that you built with your own equipment and you're able to produce at your own on your own schedule and not have to pay someone to produce it for you 'cause it's pretty costly.
[00:29:31] Andrew Seski: Yeah, it can be a real cost savings to just have normal conversations that you're having in the office, record them, and be transparent about the way that you're building.
[00:29:40] Anthony Pastore: That's right.
[00:29:40] Andrew Seski: I think that's one of the trends of some of the more successful companies in the last few years. They have built their firms in public so that their audience, their customers, and the way that sales are generated are because of the loyalty to the brand because they've been a part of the journey the whole time because of the transparency that social media's given us. And a big piece of that can come from just having open and honest conversations about how things are actually built, not to very clearly rip off how I built this by accident but.
[00:30:10] Anthony Pastore: It's all fair, right? Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, they say. But I think, you know, you were talking about multi, you know, the next generation of wealth, and I think if you really want to attract that generation from all the research we know and from talking to people who are in that age bracket, this is the way to go. They want quick. They want pithy. They want video or podcasts but they want engaging, they want conversational. Nobody's reading 40-page research reports anymore. We all know that. I think that's a pretty much it's it still happens but everybody knows — alright, if I'm gonna write a 40-page equity preference list on industrials, I also better accompany that with a 10-minute video and a 20-minute podcast just so people can say, you know what? I don't really wanna read this. I just wanna listen to it. Let me hear what the analyst has to say. That's the thing that we've learned so much of in the last few years is the importance of having a multimedia approach, you know? Articles, blogs, reports, videos, podcasts, all coming from the same firm. That's what we do here at UBS and it's I think it's been a game changer because our clients and our advisors and, of course, their prospects, they can consume it however they want, no matter what age they are. That's I think the secret sauce is just knowing that you can create content that could be, you know, interesting to any age, any demographic, as long as you're telling the story in different ways.
[00:31:33] Andrew Seski: Right. I mean, that's one of the reasons for being of Nth Round in general. We are this modern interface with, you know, private assets, which are difficult to value, difficult to communicate the value but, you know, get an easy portal to sign in with a click and you could use your iPhone to do so. It's I think what's gonna happen in probably the alternatives, whether it's, you know, any of the bulge brackets or not, this is all gonna come into meeting people where they currently are. But also, there's gonna be value from great grandpa having, you know, hosting a Jeffersonian dinner explaining why the family office was created and somebody wanting to know that one of the portfolio companies exited and they're gonna get a distribution in the K-1 and if they can get that in an email with one click and look at the total dollar number and be able to send it off to an accountant, they're gonna be way happier than, you know, whatever the family retreat is or anything like that. So, it's how do you introduce some of those tools and communication method across generations to go? Your great-grandfather had, you know, he sat with you over dinner. That's where this came from. Now, we've got a round table. Now, we've got our event. This is what it's gonna look like and how we're gonna iterate a future for the rest of these generations.
[00:32:46] Anthony Pastore: I'm still laughing about a Jeffersonian dinner. That's a great great line. I'm gonna have to use that more often. You know, and I was gonna bring up. You were talking about, you know, we talk about multi-generational wealth. We have a group here at the firm that focuses on the a multi-generational wealth and they did some research before they launched the segment last year and it says something like 83% of investors are concerned about transferring their assets smoothly. So, I mean, it's a big issue for a lot of people. Having these Jeffersonian dinners but then having every generation at the table, they don't know how to do it wisely. And then, it's like another stat that came up with that six and 10 heirs and benefactors agree that the parents have to bring up the topic. It would help break down those barriers to talking about that inheritance. The kids don't want to go to the elders. They want them to go to them — the elders to go to the kids 'cause they're like, Hey grandpa, how much money do you have and when am I getting it? That's what it sounds like in grandpa's ears perhaps. So, it's a lot of like people are just aren't talking to each other about transfer of wealth. And then, you know, what happens? These kids go to smaller shops and they or they do everything online or they ask ChatGPT where they should be investing their money and it'll give 'em some crazy answer.
[00:33:59] Andrew Seski: Right. And that's actually an interesting idea too just in the fact that I think one of the issues around CFOs trying to communicate effectively in general is the control of information and where it's coming from. And I feel as if the financial reporting is it almost mirrors this conversation right now where, you know, the father and son, all the stakeholders, all the siblings and cousins. It's like almost as if that there needs to be one very strong voice communicating about how, you know, a mandate is around the family selling assets or what that agreement looks like for whatever the cash generating business actually looks like. Could there ever be a place in time where somebody needs excess liquidity and is the agreement malleable enough to accommodate that? But if you don't know how to ask because it's not being communicated down, you lose control of everything. You may lose control of the actual asset that's generating the wealth in itself if you get pushed into some sort of exit scenario you're not, you know, prepared for.
[00:35:02] Anthony Pastore: That's right.
[00:35:02] Andrew Seski: So, it's a really interesting issue. I love the fact that you brought statistics here because, I mean, it's fascinating to know what's working and what's not.
[00:35:09] Anthony Pastore: I've got tons. I mean, you know, our we also have our family office who does a ton of research and the and that's part of our private wealth management division run by John Mathews, who is a great leader and a good friend. But you know, he said there's $71 trillion wealth opportunity out there right now globally. It's incredible to think and from a family office perspective what's really out there and how much has changed because of COVID, digital disruptions, geopolitical developments — it all matters to family offices when they're thinking about what they want to do and how they want to invest and what they want to pass down to their heirs. It's a really important and hot topic right now to think about the evolution of a family office.
[00:35:47] Andrew Seski: I'd love to learn a little bit more about UBS' family office services before we start to wrap up here, especially because I think the back when I first heard the term "family office," it meant something really different than it does today and I'm not sure that most people looking to think about multi-generational wealth or passing down businesses really understand a lot of those basic definitions.
[00:36:12] Anthony Pastore: That's right.
[00:36:12] Andrew Seski: But when I first started my journey, I thought that a family office was created by handpicking some incredible investment bankers and then they worked for just the family. Today, there is such an impossibly large spread of types of services where that's still the case for single family offices where they could still outsource the CIO role to one of the major shops or outsource just any of the different aspects of what running, you know, basically a small asset management firm for your personal wealth management, what that actually looks like.
[00:36:50] Anthony Pastore: That's right.
[00:36:51] Andrew Seski: So, I'd love to learn a little bit more about how UBS thinks in terms of where their services could be thoughtful to some of those multi-family offices or RRAs.
[00:37:00] Anthony Pastore: Yeah, and like a full disclosure. I'm certainly not in the family office but I work with them quite often and what they're, you know, what they're talking about is that they are the best representative for a family — so if a family office comes to UBS and they work with one of our advisors, they also have the backing of our family office team within the private wealth team and they get, as you just said, they have a financial analyst who can work with them. They work with somebody who helps them with their philanthropy goals. They have experts at their disposal to really help them transform the way that they're investing the money that's part of the family office, not just keeping the money someplace and having outside people run it. It's all in-house so they get it's like a full service experience for a family office when they work with our advisors here 'cause then our advisors work directly with the family office team in the home office area. So, it's a it's really it's a one-stop shop.
[00:37:52] Andrew Seski: Yeah. It used to be that you had to go out and just go try to create your own and whether you've done that, you know, UBS or another competitor to, you know, round out the services or if you wanna start your family office and wealth management services from day one.
[00:38:06] Anthony Pastore: That's exactly right. And, you know, and just for a color, the top three markets for family offices $14.6 trillion in North America, Europe has $10.5 trillion, and then Asia has $11.8 trillion. So, there's a lot of assets out there and, you know, we are trying to explain to these family offices how we can help them holistically with managing their business, managing their family money, and, you know, and keeping it by passing it to the next generation, having those family meetings, and doing the family love letters and having everybody sit around the table with their advisor as sort of the mediator in the room, you know, so the kids don't have to ask the embarrassing questions of the grandparents and the parents.
[00:38:52] Andrew Seski: I think one of the things that I'm fortunate enough to have a seat at the table is kind of a perspective into alternatives. All of Nth Round's clients are privately held companies. They're really, really interesting folks and just having a well-diversified strategy is obviously a huge portion of the wealth management services here and I think that the next generations can be highly focused on the private markets. They've seen what happens in the venture world. They're raising their own funds for the first time. They're highly proactive. Whether they're trying to be activists, shareholders, trying to trade Robinhood accounts, or try to figure out how to become micro LPs, I think that's gonna be a huge piece of this and to have that be respected and understood as a piece of a well-diversified portfolio I think is gonna be really powerful.
[00:39:40] Anthony Pastore: I agree. And even private equity is something that more and more family offices are interested in these days. It's also one of the preferred methods of investing for this year from our chief investment office at UBS is looking at private markets as, you know, as an opportunity within any and even an individual's portfolio. But certainly for a family office, it's a great avenue to be looking into for sure.
[00:40:03] Andrew Seski: Yeah, and family offices are unique too as investors just from a standpoint of while it's nice to think about becoming a micro LP, the success rate is just the amount of risk that you're taking on to make the investments is extremely high.
[00:40:16] Anthony Pastore: Exactly.
[00:40:17] Andrew Seski: So, having the experience of another firm with, you know, your formalized structure makes all of those little pieces fit into place a lot more.
[00:40:26] Anthony Pastore: That's exactly right. By the way, my team would kill me if I didn't tell everybody where our videos are located so I hope you'll allow me to do that.
[00:40:33] Andrew Seski: Please do.
[00:40:34] Anthony Pastore: UBS.com/studios and also on the UBS YouTube channel. That's our UBS Trending episode. And for the podcasts, it's all over iTunes and Spotify and everywhere, probably where your podcast sits so we can work in conjunction with each other.
[00:40:47] Andrew Seski: Is there any way that somebody can get in contact with you if they're interested in any other media?
[00:40:52] Anthony Pastore: 100%. They can email me directly. It's my name — firstname.lastname@example.org. Please feel free to reach out or you can link in with me. I'm also on LinkedIn and, you know, other social media things but LinkedIn's probably the best bet. So, please direct message me there. Happy to talk to anybody who might wanna chat a little bit more.
[00:41:12] Andrew Seski: This has been another episode of The Modern CFO Podcast. Thank you so much, Anthony. I hope we have the opportunity to speak again.
[00:41:18] Anthony Pastore: I hope so too, Andrew. Thanks for being a fantastic host. I really appreciate it. This was a lot of fun.
[00:41:22] Andrew Seski: Welcome to the other side of the table.
[00:41:24] Anthony Pastore: I still don't like it so much but I'll do it for you. Thanks, Andrew.