Ref: IMD-7-2209

Case study

Reference: IMD-7-2209

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WLIM: Scaling Up a Wealth Management Boutique

Benoit F. Leleux

By Professor Benoit F. LeleuxBenoit F. Leleux, Federica Fasoli, Kathrin Lutz and Cristian Neamtu

Jonathan Lachowitz founded a start-up venture in the Financial Planning industry called White Lighthouse Investment Management in 2006. He targeted a niche segment (US citizens living abroad) that had a critical problem that was not addressed by existing companies (eg US Tax Reporting). The organization has grown slowly and consistently. In 2015 the current form of organization is stretched to a maximum. There are several decisions Jonathan needs to make, he needs to decide whether or not to hire new employees or partners and he needs to come up with a strategy on what type of clients he should accept.

Learning Objective

  1. How targeting a niche segment can be the key to success (need-based market segmentation).
  2. How to create a knowledge-based service company (using Business Model Canvas).
  3. Understanding the competition and fee models in the financial planning industry.
  4. How the entrepreneur’s unique choices link to the financials by analyzing the DCF projected in 5 years, NPV, IRR and RI.
  5. How this unique mix of consistent choices enabled initial success and sustainable growth.



SettingsAmerica, United States of America
White Lighthouse Investment Management, Financial Services
TypeField Research
Copyright©IMD 2020
Related materialTeaching note
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Reference: IMD-7-2209

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