Company

Rothschild & Co

Position

CEO—Chief Executive Officer

Index

Power List

UHNW Wealth Managers

Location

London

Advice type

Portfolio management

Succession planning

Wealth planning

Wealth preservation

Client Types

Business owners

Entrepreneurs

Families

UHNW

Sector Focus

Financial Services

Wealth Management & Private Banking

Customer Type

Wealth adviser

Helen Watson

Spear’s Review

Helen Watson, the chief executive of Rothschild & Co’s UK wealth management business, is also a member of the company’s global executive committee, which determines the firm’s strategic direction.

Watson joined Rothschild & Co in 2010 after almost two decades at Morgan Stanley and presides over a team serving a varied clientele. The majority of her clients are entrepreneurs who have generated their wealth through business, but she and her colleagues also retain relationships with multiple generations of numerous wealthy families.

The firm’s ‘low’ client-to-adviser ratio allows it to leverage considerable expertise while maintaining flexibility. Watson is known for emphasising the importance of always putting the clients’ needs first.

Power List Profile

Helen Watson is CEO of Rothschild & Co’s UK Wealth Management business, which provides discretionary investment management services to clients as diverse as filmmakers, tech entrepreneurs, foundations, business owners, and wealthy families. Watson has made it her priority as CEO to ‘put the client first in every aspect of the business’, empowering the team to use their initiative to make decisions that always seek to benefit clients.

‘We are well-known in the industry for our exceptional client service and strong personal relationships with clients, which become more valuable than ever when things are uncertain,’ she says. This approach is reflected in exceptionally high client retention and referral rates, with both existing and new clients committing additional assets according to the firm.

‘We spend our time and energy building portfolios which will increase in value over time and outpace inflation. Our investment performance is top quartile over three, five and ten years, but we also build portfolios to withstand market extremes and are always transparent with clients about the risks, as well as the rewards, they might experience,’ Watson says.

The firm’s comprehensive and detailed approach was evidenced recently when a UHNW family switched to Rothschild & Co, changing investment strategy and reducing costs compared to the previous manager. ‘Working closely with their family office and legal tax advisers, we ensured that the family’s complex tax, investment management and ethical guidelines were accommodated, as well as establishing a new relationship with an external global custodian,’ Watson explains.

Investing responsibly has always been central to the firm’s approach. ‘We’re constantly striving to improve how we integrate sustainability in our investment process as we’re convinced it’s the best way for us to deliver long-term returns for clients.’

Rank: Top Flight

Top Flight 2023, Power List

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