Stuart Thomas provides strategic investment and portfolio management advice to high net worth individuals, trusts, charities and businesses across the South Island.
People Focus: Lory Luo
Wealth Management Adviser, Auckland
Lory has over a decade of experience working with private clients to provide tailored wealth management and financial planning advice, including retirement planning and immigration investment services.
Born and raised in the province of Canton, China, Lory came to New Zealand at 19 to study business and finance, and fell in love with the country.
After graduating, Lory joined the wealth management team at ASB, building a wealth investment portfolio of over $150m in just eight years. She also worked closely with many immigration advisers and immigration New Zealand to meet Investor Category clients’ investment needs.
Lory joined Jarden’s wealth management team in January 2018. She has a passion for investment planning and she enjoys working closely with her clients, often over many years, to meet their unique and changing investment needs.
Lory has a B Bus from the Auckland University of Technology and a Grad Dip (Financial Planning and Service) from Massey University. She speaks fluent English, Cantonese and Mandarin.
What made you decide to join Jarden?
After working at one of New Zealand’s major banks for 12 years, I was ready to take up some new challenges. It took me a long time to make the decision, because I was looking for the right place to build my wealth management practice for the next twenty or thirty years.
It’s exciting to work in a completely different environment and I can do a lot of things I couldn’t do in a commercial bank. At Jarden I’m encouraged to think of my practice as my own business, and to create and implement my own strategies. The management team is absolutely supportive of my ideas and I have a lot of freedom to do what I think will work for my clients and my career.
Tell us about something special you’ve been able to do at Jarden?
In my first eight months at Jarden, I was able to onboard quite a number of clients who had followed me here because of our existing relationships. I am so grateful for their trust in me and I wanted to thank them, so I decided to host a Moon Cake Festival celebration.
The Moon Cake Festival is really important in Chinese culture, second only to Chinese New Year. It is a harvest festival celebrated in mid-autumn, when the moon is round and full, and it’s a time when friends and family get together to celebrate.
With the support of my management team and help from my colleagues, I hosted 50 people at a Chinese restaurant, bringing together my clients, colleagues and referral partners. It was a great night and it was wonderful to see everyone in the room engaged and connected. That’s when I knew I had found the Jarden family I had wanted
How has your own experience as an immigrant informed your practice?
Over the last few years, I have helped a number of immigration clients invest significant amounts of money in the New Zealand market to support their residency applications. I’m one of the most experienced advisers in this field, so I understand the policy and can work alongside Immigration New Zealand. This has proved extremely helpful to my clients.
As a migrant myself, I know that settling in New Zealand is a big decision. In China, things work very differently, so clients often expect you to have wide knowledge and to help resolve other issues too. I’m able to share my personal experience and introduce my clients to immigration advisors, accountants, and international tax lawyers who can help them find the answers to their questions. These connections have been invaluable for my clients. And of course, I speak fluent Mandarin and Cantonese, so that really helps my Chinese clients to feel engaged in the process.
As a wealth management adviser, how do you support your clients through market ups and downs?
The market can be challenging at times, and when there’s a downturn, your relationships with your clients become even more important. You have to genuinely care about and understand your clients, make sure you’re always communicating, and do the right thing, right from the start, every single time. It’s a long journey, so we hold hands with our clients and go through it together. When clients stay with you regardless of how the market performs, I call that a success.
How would you describe the culture at Jarden?
From my first day at Jarden, I was amazed by the quality of the people in the room and I knew I had made the right choice. There is so much I can learn from my colleagues and that has been a real value-add to my practice. We respect, trust and support each other, and so we get through any challenges together.
I really enjoy working at Jarden and I can easily talk to the management team, or connect my clients with other areas of the business. I see myself working here for the next 20 or 30 years.
I want to enjoy the rest of my career at Jarden and retire from here.
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