You could say money talks.
Tiger 21, a networking organization for the wealthy that started up a decade ago in the U.S., has had its first meeting in Calgary.
The Investment Group for Enhanced Results in the 21st Century — known by the acronym Tiger 21 — was founded in 1999 by Michael Sonnenfeldt, and is headquartered in New York City.
The group says it harnesses the collective intelligence of the super-affluent, who meet monthly in groups of 10 to 14 people to exchange investment ideas and share personal experiences on a broad range of wealth-related issues.
Quite a thirst
Canada's first chapter launched in Vancouver last year and a new chapter in Calgary had its inaugural meeting over the summer.
"There seems to be quite a thirst for a peer-to-peer social learning, group, and wealth stewartship issues," said Thane Stenner, who brought the idea to Calgary. "A lot of wealth has been created in Canada especially because of the commodity boom and especially in Calgary," he said.
The Calgary chapter is scheduled to meet 10 times a year in a private setting, such as a club or restaurant.
Among other criteria, individuals require $10-million in investable assets to qualify for membership and must be willing to cough up a $30,000 annual membership fee.
Investor and real estate developer Hal Walker chairs Calgary's chapter. "It gives you an opportunity to relate with other people that have some of the same business challenges," said Walker. "There's no way to have a better access to people than in a confidential group."
Walker said as much as members discuss business, it's also a chance to discuss personal issues that arise from being rich.
"We do talk about family issues, we talk about personal issues and it's nice to have a confidential private setting with a number of other people that you know and respect," he said.
Walker says the seven member Calgary chapter is diverse with interests in real estate, oil and gas and manufacturing.
He said chapters have a cap of 15 members, but noted there will likely be two or three chapters opening in the city in the next few years.
Tiger 21 chapters in Ottawa and Edmonton are also expected to launch later this year.
It is estimated there are 30,000 Canadians who can boast of having over $10-million in assets, including 4,000 with over $30-million.