John Haase graced our cover in April 2011 to discuss a topic on many advisors’ minds—the move to independence (see “The Right Way to Leave a Wirehouse,” Investment Advisor, April 2011). Having just left Goldman Sachs, where he was one of the youngest managing directors in the venerable firm’s history, for Boston-based Fireman Capital Advisors, Haase had a fresh perspective on the pros and cons of making the leap. FCA, which counts Paul Fireman, former Reebok International chairman and CEO, as one of its first clients and lead investors, at the time managed $1 billion in assets for 12 high-net-worth families.
So what’s happened in the time since? A new name and $500 million in new assets, to start.
We’ll start at the beginning. How’s the firm done since we last spoke?
We decided from a branding perspective that a different name probably better represents us and who we are. When we last spoke, we had a dozen clients and $1 billion in assets under management. From that time, we’ve probably added a half-dozen more clients from around the country to our roster and surpassed the $1.5 billion mark.
Why the name change?
Paul Fireman actually said very early on that we’re probably eventually going to need to change the name to something that resonates and reflects [our] client base. We liked Windrose for a couple of reasons. We liked it because it’s a name that sounds familiar, but at the same time people have a little bit of trouble putting their finger on it. We liked the fact that we could define the brand. It’s a little bit of an empty vessel for us to build our culture and firm inside of and around. Windrose is an older term, something that would help you figure out the direction of the wind from a navigation perspective.