AN INTERVIEW WITH CLAY SPEAKMAN
WE RECENTLY SAT DOWN WITH CLAY SPEAKMAN, THE CO-FOUNDER OF MAGNOLIA LIFESTYLE + BENEFITS TO DISCUSS A NEW TREND IN LUXURY SPENDING: THE ROLE OF A PURCHASING ADVISOR.Clay Speakman, President and Co-FounderWhat is a Purchasing Advisor?A Purchasing Advisor assists familiesin making a smarter purchase. Similarto a Wealth or Tax advisor, the PurchasingAdvisor has a duty to be transparentin representing their clients bestinterest in a transaction or purchase. Byleveraging the collective buying powerof many families, a Purchasing Advisorcan also create compelling purchaseopportunities for each family.How was Magnolia created and whodo you assist with purchases?Magnolia was developed in 2013as an exclusive member benefit forTIGER 21, a group of 250 privateinvestors collectively managingover $25 billion in assets. In early2014, Magnolia began offering thesame services to an additional 700global families who spend an averageof $500,000 or more annually onlifestyle and professional services. Infact, we currently have invited Cuv√©einvestors to enjoy these services.How many purchases have MagnoliaMembers made?Since launching in January 2013,we’ve completed over 400 purchaseson behalf of our Members, totalingnearly $25 million and capturing acost-savings of $4.2 million. Our purchasesrange from watches to multi-millionaircraft, with an average purchasearound $80,000.What were the most popular purchaseslast year?Private Aviation, Auto Purchases,Family Travel and our Group Insuranceprograms have been the most popular.However, we’ve also seen large costsavingsin our Art and Jewelry practices.What have you seen as the biggestbenefit to Members?Everyone likes to “win,” howevermany times the most valuable thing to amember is gaining access to a productthat they couldn’t otherwise obtain.We focus on helping Members makethe smartest purchase and saving themprecious time during the entire process.For example, a Purchasing Advisorcan review a current bill from a members’aviation provider and negotiate itdown 20%, and in the next instance beinterviewing three art firms to determinewhich is best to represent the member inthe purchase of a European sculpture.How is this different than aconcierge service?While traditional concierge services arequite good at arranging dinner reservations,floral arrangements, errand services,etc., our team really excels at the largerlifestyle areas such as villa travel or privateaviation, where a savings in time, purchaseamount, and special access reallyrequires expertise to make a difference.Because the role of a PurchasingAdvisor is to guide the client to thebest purchasing decision in each case,Magnolia doesn’t have exclusive marketingrelationships with any brands. Weexplore and recommend any options inthe marketplace that make the most sensefor our members, as well as present anypre-negotiated benefits that we’ve securedon behalf of our members.In fact, we currently have invited Cuv√©e investors to take advantage of the benefits of Magnolia.
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