KETV Omaha — Warren Buffet, known to many as the “Oracle of Omaha” and one of the most successful investors of all-time, is definitely a household name. Even the investing layman will recognize it. But Buffet and Berkshire Hathaway aren’t the only investing success stories to come out of Omaha, Nebraska. Edson L. Bridges II and the Bridges companies — including Bridges Investment Counsel, Bridges Investment Management, and Provident Trust Company — are hidden gems in the investment and wealth management world; providing investment management services for nearly $2 billion in assets.
Although Bridges built his business in the backyard of one of the greatest investors of all time, the Bridges companies certainly possess investing chops of their own. After earning his B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Nebraska and M.B.A. from the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration, Edson returned to Omaha to begin his career in the wealth management field in 1959 when he joined his father’s investment advisory business. Those early days Edson remembers clearly. “We had maybe 10 or so families that dad had as clients, so maybe there’s 20 portfolios,” he said. That year, the total fee income was only $8,000. In the next couple of years, that income doubled and continued to grow until the business was earning around $33,000 per year.
Since then, Bridges and his businesses have posted a long and strong track record of success. In 1963, Bridges Investment Fund became the first Nebraska-based mutual fund to be registered under the Investment Company Act. The early 1990s saw the successful launch of Provident Trust Company, a Nebraska-chartered independent trust company. Through Provident, Bridges saw the opportunity to provide much needed trust and estate administrative services to investment management clients, while providing for the ability to continue to work with successive generations of families. This foresight has been a key driver in the success of the Bridges businesses and has fueled the management team to think forward in all that they do.
“It’s no secret that the largest wealth transfer in history is imminent, if not currently underway,” said Brian R. Miles, Vice President of Bridges Investment Management. “Many experts estimate that upwards of $30 to $40 trillion in assets will be transferred over the next 10 to 30 years. Companies like ours that offer expertise in a wide range of trust and investment management services will have a competitive advantage as this wealth transition unfolds. This creates a significant opportunity to grow our business so that we can better serve the needs of a broader range of clients.”
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