When H.P. Lau moved to Lincoln, he had a box of lemons and a dream to make something of himself. He launched his wholesale grocery business in 1870 with that box of fruit and built it into a thriving business that lasted for 90 years. The business occupied a three-story, 48,000-square-foot building that still stands in the heart of Lincoln.
Following the entrepreneurial spirit of his great grandfather, Robert Brooks Lau began Lau Financial Group in the 1970s. The firm specializes in wealth management services, including retirement, investment, estate and business planning, in addition to college savings, charitable giving and wealth preservation.
Hugh Lau joined the firm 22 years ago and took over operations alongside JoAnn Kreitman, branch operations manager, in 2019. This year the firm announced that it was leaving D.A. Davidson, whom they had been with since 2009, to join LPL Financial.
Lau said that while he and Kreitman are running the show, there is a larger team in the backend offered through LPL Financial, which includes assistance in other daily operational areas like marketing, accounting, technology, as well long-term business management.
Currently, Lau Financial Group serves approximately $750 million in advisory, brokerage and retirement plan assets.
“We’re a small team of two and are fully focused on our core expertise and offerings,” he said. “However, we have the added layer of support from LPL Financial, which gives us robust support, yet the freedom to build the practice on our own terms.”
When asked what makes Lau Financial Group stand apart, Lau said it is simple: its history.
“We are inspired by our history and adhere to values that have been passed on from one generation to the next,” Lau shared. “We believe in working hard for our clients, cultivating strong partnerships and relationships and providing the value and respect our clients and their families deserve. It’s all about following the ‘golden rule.’”
Its service approach is centered on a simple, tried-and-true commitment in getting to know each client and their family. This method allows the firm to get to know the inner workings of each client’s unique financial situation, giving the tools to develop a robust plan that considers every contingency.
Its goal is to make informed decisions, coming up with the best strategy to reduce risks and properly manage cash flow. Clients are encouraged to ask questions and work alongside Lau Financial Group to better customize their plans to meet their financial goals and individual situations.
While the team at Lau Financial Group is focused on ensuring clients are set up for financial success, they are also focused on the community’s success.
“Supporting and catering to the local community has been a generational affair,” he said. “Now, I carry on that legacy with our recent launch as an independent financial advisory. We succeed in the local community by being a part of it in a genuine way.”
In 2021, Lau Financial Group made a concentrated effort on how they could support the community. They provided lunch for the downtown fire department and local police department to express gratitude, delivered cookies to local pharmacies in light of COVID-19 and hosted a taco bar night at Lincoln Lighthouse, a local program focused on increasing opportunities for young adults to graduate from high school.
Looking ahead, the team at Lau Financial Group is planning to grow their reach in Nebraska, as well as discussing and transacting securities businesses across 28 states in the United States.
“This is how we make a positive impact in Nebraska and beyond,” Lau said.
No matter what, their dedication lies in helping families of all kinds build lasting legacies that will carry on from generation to generation, just like the Lau family has done.
“The future is driven by our move to being independent,” explained Lau. “With that, we can be more active in our community and really personalize the services we offer. We are able to control the whole client experience while having access to objective research and market insights, in addition to offering a more comprehensive array of investment choices to our clients.
“Our practice was created with the mission of assisting clients with building multi-generational wealth for their children and grandchildren. Everything we do is to help our clients feel more secure, calm, confident and comfortable with their financial situation.” resolution of the situation.
Other situations could range from a security alarm not registering or the temperature of a freezer being out of its normal range.
“What I feel I brought to this company has resulted in tremendous growth,” Petersen said. “I believe in full transparency and speed-to-resolution and I remain confident that they work in sync.”
Petersen, who grew up in the Benson area, is a 1982 graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha. His career stops included stints at Carpenter Paper Co. and All Makes Office Equipment before joining FBG Facility Services in 2015.
Petersen replaced Terri Gogetap — daughter of founder Wayne Simmonds — as president. Gogetap remains as chairwoman of the board. Both of Petersen’s children are involved in the business. Son Drew is director of strategic relationship and runs the Omaha district. Daughter Ashley is a senior account manager for health care clients.
FBG Facility Services most long-serving employee is Jim Simmonds, brother of the late Wayne Simmonds, who has 48 years of service. He is a vice president.