WE doc­tor STARTED cannabis THIS


BC Business Magazine - - Contents -

Only a fi­nan­cial or­ga­ni­za­tion op­er­at­ing with BMO’S “One Bank” ap­proach can nav­i­gate the di­verse chal­lenges of to­day’s busi­ness world. BMO is Canada’s oldest in­cor­po­rated bank—and Bcbusi­ness caught up with its B.C. & Yukon ex­ec­u­tive team to speak to their ex­per­tise on lead­er­ship, wealth man­age­ment, in­vest­ment ex­pan­sion, cor­po­rate fi­nance and cap­i­tal sourc­ing. It is clear that BMO’S abil­ity to rally the var­i­ous part­ners within the team for the com­mon good of the cus­tomer is both a strate­gic ad­van­tage and a cat­a­lyst for this busi­ness to “punch above its weight” Michael Bon­ner, Se­nior Vice-pres­i­dent & Re­gional Head, B.C. & Yukon Di­vi­sion, BMO Fi­nan­cial Group

Q: You’ve led teams across the coun­try, from Hal­i­fax to Toronto and Van­cou­ver— what cru­cial com­po­nents in­spire them? MB: It doesn’t mat­ter the ge­og­ra­phy or the busi­ness; my view is peo­ple are peo­ple and for the most part peo­ple want to be suc­cess­ful, be im­mersed in a great cul­ture and be part of some­thing big­ger.

I think any good leader wants to be able to in­spire peo­ple so that they may un­lock their po­ten­tial and achieve op­ti­mum per­for­mance. It’s good for them per­son­ally, for their or­gan-iza­tion and, of course, for cus­tomers. The world has changed. Our em­ploy­ees don’t hon­estly care what your ti­tle is or where you are in the hi­er­ar­chy. They want you to in­spire, be au­then­tic, lead by ex­am­ple in­stead of from an of­fice, and show them ap­pre­ci­a­tion.

Many se­nior peo­ple ex­pect that em­ploy­ees will fol­low them be­cause of their ti­tle, or their place in the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s hi­er­ar­chy; but all good lead­ers should strive to de­velop a bond so strong that not only will their peo­ple fol­low their lead in busi­ness, but fol­low it into dif­fer­ent parts of an or­ga­ni­za­tion or maybe even dif­fer­ent parts of the coun­try.

Jen­nifer Muench, Vice-pres­i­dent and Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, BMO Har­ris Pri­vate Bank­ing, B.C.

Q: What are the best tax-ef­fi­cient so­lu­tions to pro­tect wealth? JM: A con­cept we com­monly dis­cuss is the use of a per­ma­nent in­sur­ance pol­icy as an in­vest­ment—such as carv­ing out a por­tion of sur­plus/in­vestable cap­i­tal that has al­ready been ear­marked for the next gen­er­a­tion—to take ad­van­tage of the sig­nif­i­cant tax ben­e­fits pro­vided for in­sur­ance poli­cies ver­sus tax­able non-reg­is­tered in­vest­ing.

Trans­fer­ring a por­tion of the sur­plus cash flow/as­sets to a per­ma­nent life in­sur­ance pol­icy will re­duce fu­ture tax­able in­come by ac­cess­ing the tax-de­ferred growth of an ex­empt pol­icy. Upon death, th­ese ac­cu­mu­lated sums can then be trans­ferred tax ef­fi­ciently to heirs, since the death ben­e­fit of the pol­icy can be paid to an in­di­vid­ual’s ben­e­fi­cia­ries tax-free.

Al­ter­na­tively, in the case of a cor­po­ra­te­owned pol­icy, the funds can be paid to the cor­po­ra­tion tax-free, af­ter which all, or a sig­nif­i­cant por­tion, of the pro­ceeds can be dis­trib­uted as a tax-free div­i­dend to the share­holder’s es­tate.

Michael Wood, Se­nior VicePres­i­dent, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor & Re­gional Man­ager, Western Canada, BMO Nes­bitt Burns Inc.

Q: You’ve wit­nessed—and or­ches­trated —ex­pan­sions in in­vest­ment ad­vi­sory and fi­nan­cial plan­ning busi­nesses. How is this land­scape chang­ing? MW: There are five driv­ers of change: tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vance­ment; reg­u­la­tory re­quire­ments; an ag­ing de­mo­graphic; in­creas­ing ex­pec­ta­tions of clients; and the com­pet­i­tive en­vi­ron­ment—the lat­ter per­tain­ing to the fact that we now com­pete with the likes of Google and Ama­zon.

This is tremen­dously ex­cit­ing be­cause our re­sources have en­abled us to adapt to th­ese changes. As a re­sult, what we of­fer clients is sub­stan­tially dif­fer­ent from the old days when typ­i­cally the fo­cus would be on build­ing in­vest­ment port­fo­lios.

Specif­i­cally, as fully in­te­grated in­vest­ment ad­vi­sors, we pro­vide a one-stop shop for our clients for all their fi­nan­cial af­fairs, whether it be credit needs, in­sur­ance or es­tate plan­ning. We’re mak­ing it easy for clients to do busi­ness with us in the way they want to do busi­ness.

An­drew Hung, Head, Cor­po­rate Fi­nance, B.C. Di­vi­sion, BMO Cor­po­rate Fi­nance Di­vi­sion

Q: What are the chal­lenges you face in such a com­pet­i­tive mar­ket? AH: For me, the key op­por­tu­nity is to make bank­ing sim­ple so our clients can fo­cus on build­ing their busi­ness, ac­cel­er­at­ing their plans and ul­ti­mately be­ing suc­cess­ful. In B.C., busi­nesses are not al­ways lin­ear and many have needs that cover a wide spec­trum from ev­ery­day op­er­a­tions, growth cap­i­tal, real es­tate and in­ter­na­tional trade.

With that in mind, our group rep­re­sents 13 lines of busi­nesses pre­sented to the mar­ket as a uni­fied plat­form, where we put the cus­tomer at the cen­tre of ev­ery­thing we do. One thing to note: as a North Amer­i­can bank with full cross-bor­der ca­pa­bil­i­ties to the U.S., my team can sup­port our cus­tomers into the U.S. and open up new mar­kets. All this can’t be achieved overnight, so we do take the long view in our re­la­tion­ships with the aim to grow and sup­port our clients over time.

Jamie Rogers, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Head In­vest­ment & Cor­po­rate Bank­ing, BMO Cap­i­tal Mar­kets Corp.

Q: Cap­i­tal sourc­ing is so global now—what do clients need to be mind­ful of? JR: There is no doubt that ac­cess to cap­i­tal has be­come much more global in na­ture for our clients.

With such an in­creas­ing reach and speed at which cap­i­tal is able to move comes more volatil­ity and our clients are in­creas­ingly look­ing at ways to mit­i­gate the risk to, and im­pact on, their strate­gic growth plans. As well, they are look­ing to man­age their own cap­i­tal struc­tures ef­fec­tively and—more im­por­tantly—to rely more than ever on their bank­ing and cap­i­tal mar­kets part­ners to op­er­ate ef­fi­ciently and suc­cess­fully nav­i­gate ever-evolv­ing global cap­i­tal mar­kets.

BMO has been around since 1817 and has been an in­te­gral part of Canada's his­tory—it fi­nanced the Cana­dian Pa­cific Rail­way and is Canada's first bank. The fu­ture for BMO, its dy­namic lead­er­ship team and 45,000 em­ploy­ees across Canada and the U.S. looks bright as the bank con­tin­ues to evolve and meet new op­por­tu­ni­ties to give cus­tomers the prod­ucts, ser­vices and ad­vice they need to meet and ex­ceed their fi­nan­cial goals. They started this and it's clear by their in­ten­sity that they're here to stay

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