Investment Partnership

Left to right: JRS Wealth Management President Jim Stark, Hallmark Financial President Sherry Hall and Wilde Management Group Co-Founder Trevor Wilde. 

Sometimes the best advice a business can take is the direction they would provide their clients—secure a robust financial future by thinking long-term. A recent partnership among three Arizona-based financial firms aims to protect the success of both proprietor and customer. 

Tucson’s JRS Wealth Management and Hallmark Financial recently created an affiliation with Wilde Wealth Management, an award-winning comprehensive independent financial advisory firm based in Scottsdale. 

All three financial firms knew from the outset that finding a trustworthy cohort was the only option.

This collaborative business affiliation began May 1. While a full merger is planned for the future, concrete dates for that part of the partnership are open-ended. 

Jim Stark, president at JRS Wealth Management, said he began to look for a solid partner to link with about two years ago. 

“Just as we tell our clients that they need to be preparing for the future, we knew we needed to do the same,” Stark said. “And I knew I needed to add some depth and youth to our business.”

JRS Wealth Management offers boutique financial investment services for retirement planning, 401(K) plans and education savings, utilizing both in-depth fundamental and technical analysis. The group employs a team of financial planners who boast 75 years of experience in the field. 

Stark’s brother and business partner, Rick, will retire this year, thus the timing of the partnership is apt. But the decision didn’t come easy, he explained, and the cornerstone to this move rested on finding a like-minded partner that’s operates with utmost integrity.

“What I’m most excited about is the people we’re affiliating with,” Stark said. 

Not only did he observe his new partner’s ethical standard, Stark said, colleagues in the independent financial investment community echoed that sentiment. Similar to JRS, Wilde Wealth Management uses the same technique for sound portfolio management, which boosted Starks confidence in the business move. 

“There just weren’t any ‘uh oh’ moments in our due diligence process,” he said. 

Hallmark Financial moved into JRS’s office space when its affiliation launched last month. Both Tucson companies will retain individual brands at this time, and neither are laying off employees.

Hallmark is an independent financial consulting firm that offers planning services in retirement income strategies, legacy preservation and comprehensive security outlining; the local company has more than 30 years of financial planning services under its belt.

Sherry Hall, president at Hallmark Financial, said this new partnership offers her firm a trusted colleague that can recommend the best solution to any client facing a financial security issue. 

Now any time Hall has a question for, say, a Certified Public Accountant, she said, she can simply ring her partners at Wilde and resolve the matter in-house.

While the goal isn’t to replace a client’s CPA or attorney, potentially having that resource is invaluable, she added. 

Even though the internet era gives people a wealth of knowledge about financial planning, recent studies show that all ages groups still want a human being to at least coach their long-term securities decisions, Hall explained. Thus, bolstering the professional recommendations a company like Hallmark can provide is essential.  

“The research has shown clients really want a teammate,” Hall said. “And we are seeing in our industry people are coming more and more to us rather than less.”

Hall has no plans to retire, she said, and signing onto this new endeavor was more motivated by joining a productive team that can better serve her clientele. She further said linking with other independent financial advisors—which aren’t driven by selling products or meeting finance-based metrics—made this move very attractive.

From day one, the goal of launching an independent investment firm was to provide a service to folks with capital who aren’t surrounded by high-powered CPAs and attorneys, said Trevor Wilde, co-founder at Wilde Wealth Management. And expanding the company’s reach to Tucson came with thoughtful consideration. 

Wilde Wealth Management provides a plethora of services including thorough retirement, investment, real estate, insurance, legal and tax planning. Trevor Wilde and his father, Bill, co-founded the investment group in 2003. Since then, the independent investment firm has garnered extensive national recognition, whilst staying grounded and committed to serving working and middle-class investors.

For the last 11 years, Wilde Wealth has been ranked by Barron’s as one of America’s top 1,200 advisors, earning 7th place in Arizona in 2018.

Wilde, a University of Arizona graduate and former Wildcat football player, said his collegiate experience shaped how he runs his investment firm today, especially playing under the late coach Dick Tomey. Wilde Wealth, he said, is committed to community building and focused on securing a solid future for families like his own that work for a living.

“At the end of the day, I feel appreciated,” Wilde said. “The people that we serve, they’ve been looking for what we offer. And most of my clients come from other advisors.” 

And finally finding “like-minded” firms to coalesce with give Wilde Wealth Management an opportunity to properly expand its operations, he said.