Barry Ritholtz and Josh Brown, two Wall Streeters known for their massive social media followings and razor-sharp insight, have started their own investment firm, Ritholtz Wealth Management.
"We've been kicking around for a long time," Ritholtz told Business Insider. "This is something you always kind of think about ... 'What if we could make all the decisions?' Everything we're doing is essentially the same, only now we have the opportunity to really reinvest in the firm. There are just so many things you can do for clients, but they all cost money. Now we can reinvest all our capital into running the business."
Ritholtz and Brown, who write the blogs The Big Picture, and The Reformed Broker respectively, have spent years writing about the lack of transparency and conflicts of interest that run rampant on Wall Street. They consider this new venture a chance to manage money with integrity.
Brown will act as CEO and Ritholtz will act as CIO and Chairman of the firm. It's registered with the SEC, which means Ritholtz Wealth Management has over $100 million AUM and can serve clients nationally from its Park Avenue office.
"We're doubling down on wealth management," said Brown.
Ritholtz and Brown started talking about striking out on their own around Memorial Day of this year. After saying goodbye to their former employer, Fusion Analytics, and setting up a seamless transition with vendors and clients — all the duo's Fusion clients are heading to Ritholtz Wealth — the firm is ready to launch.
And where some Wall Street CEOs see 'uncertainty' that gives them pause in our current post-crisis economy, Ritholtz sees only opportunity.
"We're saying 'hey, if you don't want to do it, we're happy to do it,'" said Ritholtz. "Now when everyone's confused and doesn't know what's going on, that's when there's tremendous opportunities."
*DISCLOSURE: Several of us have hung out with both Brown and Ritholtz socially over the years, and consider both to be friends. Hence we hope to see them succeed..
More From Business Insider