The biggest risk you take is not taking any risks.

Marguerita%20Cheng Marguerita%20Cheng

Marguerita Cheng

Chief executive, Blue Ocean Global Wealth

Having a Chinese dad and an American mom has helped Marguerita Cheng, CEO of Blue Ocean Global Wealth, connect with people of all backgrounds. "I have had to straddle Eastern and Western culture — I get Confucian guilt from my dad and Irish Catholic guilt from my mom," she said, laughing.

In addition, living in the U.S., Europe and Asia has further exposed Ms. Cheng to different ideas and approaches.

One concept in particular, known as "Blue Ocean Strategy," informs her Gaithersburg, Md., practice. The idea is to focus primarily on "blue oceans of untapped new market spaces ripe for growth."

In support of that notion, Ms. Cheng and her business partner, Sameer Somal, specialize in multi-generational and blended families, and stress education and planning before asset management. And they don't benchmark themselves to the competition.

Thinking way outside the box, the partners bought an Indian web development company in order to have control over their own web presence and financial technology.

Ms. Cheng joined the industry in 1998 after reading extensively about personal finance and realizing that it was a discipline in itself.

"I had to face my fears when I entered the business with two small children and no role models," she said. "But the biggest risk you take is not taking any risks."

— Deborah Nason


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