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Krawcheck Seeks to Open Gold to the Masses at GBI

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Sallie Krawcheck, one of the financial industry’s most well-known executives, joined the advisory board of Gold Bullion International on Wednesday largely due to her belief in asset and portfolio diversification, according to the company. Plus, the former head of Bank of America-Merrill Lynch’s (BAC) wealth-management unit thinks that investors of all levels should have the opportunity to invest directly in precious metals.

“She is by no means making a call on gold but sees it as part of the diversification of investor portfolios, and this is a great way to do it,” said GBI CEO Savneet Singh, in an interview with AdvisorOne. “She became aware of us and saw the value of the product and how it is democratizing [the ownership of] real assets.”

GBI provides broker-dealers, RIAs and investors with access to a platform for purchasing, vaulting and owning physical precious metals. Its main customers, according to Singh, are several of the major wirehouse broker-dealers—though he declined to state which “No. 1 and No. 2” firm GBI works with. (Industry experts generally consider Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley (MS) to be the largest wirehouses based on assets under management.)

“She knows both [the advisor and investor] end markets very well and that interplay,” said Singh (right), “and we needed to learn and get further exposure to these markets.”

Having Krawcheck on the GBI board, he adds, “is a good way to help us meet more people in the industry as we seek to expand our broker-dealer clients.”

“I don’t know of anyone with more experience in the [wealth-management] field,” Singh said. “How could we get anyone who knows the end-customer better?”


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