$66 Billion in Financial Institution Activity, Multiple High-Net-Worth Transactions and Coldstream Hires First Chief Revenue Officer
Though we keep one eye on the stock market as the Fed continues to battle inflation, there’s much across our industry deserving of attention. In this month’s Transitions, Transactions & Promotions column we cover the latest in M&A activity, advisor recruiting, promotions and people moves.
- The advisor transactions arena witnessed a flurry of activity, including a $36 billion recruitment by LPL, Dynasty recruiting large high-net-worth-focused firms, Advisor Group onboarding an $800 million ensemble practice and Perigon proving it can compete with the giants.
- M&A surged in the last month with SageView’s fifth acquisition in a year backed by Aquiline, Advisor Group’s $30 billion move in the financial institutions space and Wealth Enhancement Group’s $1.7 billion addition.
- In promotions and people moves, Coldstream appointed a Schwab veteran to its newly created position of Chief Revenue Officer. Also, as we covered last week, Smarsh hired a new CEO to steer it through the ever-evolving regulatory landscape.
Details follow below.
The retail brokerage and advisory business of CUNA Brokerage Services, Inc., with approximately $36 billion in brokerage and advisory assets, joined LPL’s Institution Services platform. CUNA Brokerage, the wealth management arm of CUNA Mutual Group, serves approximately 550 financial advisors across over 250 credit unions.
Why it matters: Just when you think no one can match LPL’s hot recruiting streak, LPL tops itself. This transaction also underlines the continued importance of wealth management for bank and credit union profits.
For more information, see the press release.
2. Dynasty Recruits Two Firms Totaling $2.4 Billion
Dynasty Financial Partners recently announced the recruitment of DayMark Wealth Partners, a newly formed firm of seven Ohio-based Wells Fargo vets with $1.4 billion in client assets and New York-based Ascent Wealth Partners, a boomerang group that rejoined the firm and manages $1 billion.
Why it matters: First, this transaction highlights the industry’s focus on serving high-net-worth clientele, as Dynasty, Ascent and DayMark all operate in this space. In addition, Ascent’s return to Dynasty demonstrates independent firms’ increasing need for efficient external support structures.
IronBridge Wealth Counsel, with eight advisors and over $800 million in assets, joined Advisor Group through SagePoint Financial, one of its network of independent broker-dealers. An ensemble practice with five partners, IronBridge has offices in seven states.
Why it matters: We will likely hear the word “ensemble” more frequently in the future as independent advisors explore organizing themselves in ways that provide a better experience for their clients and allow practices to run more efficiently. Though organizational details vary from firm to firm, ensembles operate on flatter hierarchies than a typical firm, akin to a law partnership or shared medical practice.
Broker-dealers and corporate RIAs would do well to follow Advisor Group’s lead and prioritize recruitment of advisor ensembles.
To learn more, see the press release.
4. PERIGON WEALTH MANAGEMENT SUCCESSFULLY RECRUITS ADVISORS WITH OVER $750 MILLION IN ASSETS UNDER MANAGEMENT
Perigon recently announced its recruitment of Orinda, California-based Stephen Sparolini, formerly of Fisher Investments, with over $550 million in primarily high-net-worth assets, and Delaware-based Greenville Financial Group, which manages about $200 million.
Why it matters: As we covered previously, the largest firms don’t always win the recruiting race. Small firms have advantages that many advisors find attractive – including access and more personalized service – and Perigon’s latest recruits highlight that trend. Advisors with $750 million in assets or fewer may look mediocre to industry giants, but they are game-changing for a firm with just over $3 billion.
For more information, read the press release.
Mergers & Acquisitions
Beyond its deal with IronBridge mentioned above, Advisor Group also announced the acquisition of financial institution-focused broker-dealer Infinex Financial Holdings, which has $30 billion in assets and over 750 financial professionals in more than 230 bank and credit union-based wealth management programs.
Advisor Group and Infinex structured the acquisition to avoid the need for client repapering.
Why it matters: As with the LPL recruitment of CUNA Brokerage, this acquisition stresses the importance of wealth management programs for financial institutions and the industry’s responding focus on serving those needs.
Structuring this acquisition to avoid repapering also demonstrates the importance of smooth transitions to clients, which is one of the pain points advisors must solve during any transition, as we previously discussed early this month.
To find out more, view the press release.
Wealth Enhancement Group acquired Kings Point Capital Management. The firm, based in Great Neck, New York and Brentwood, Tennessee, includes five advisors and $1.7 billion in client assets. Founded by former Goldman Sachs executives, Kings Point serves high-net-worth families, foundations and endowments with a focus on tax efficiency, estate planning, charitable giving and asset protection.
Why it matters: As with the Dynasty recruits above and Alera’s acquisition of Wharton that we covered last week, this acquisition further demonstrates the industry focus on serving the unique needs of high-net-worth clientele.
SageView Advisory Group acquired Valencia, California-based kPlans Investment Services, a retirement plan and wealth management firm with $825 million in assets under advisement. It’s the fifth acquisition by SageView since July 2021.
Why it matters: The Aquiline Capital Partners-backed deal is the latest example of private equity driving explosive growth over a short time frame.
SageView and kPlans both feature retirement and advisory practices, so kPlans should fit well with SageView’s long term growth strategy, including introducing retirement clients to advisory services, as we recently discussed with SageView’s Head of Wealth Management, Jim Dario.
To learn more, view the press release.
Promotions & People Moves
Coldstream Wealth Management appointed Natalie Straub as Chief Revenue Officer, a newly created role dedicated to the development and implementation of the firm’s strategic growth plans. A 16-year veteran of Schwab Advisor Services, Straub will introduce business planning and coaching programs suited to each wealth manager’s goals. Straub will also participate in scaling the company’s business operations.
Why it matters: A relative newcomer to the C-suite, chief revenue officers manage and align all functions on the revenue generation side of a business and plan for future revenue growth. Coldstream’s creation of this position signals a focus on revenue generation and a seriousness about its strategic growth.
Straub will implement Coldstream’s anti-private equity model of growth, which focuses on aligning growth with long-term client needs rather than the short-term financial goals it says are common with private equity.
To learn more, view the press release.
Julius Buchanan, Managing Editor at Wealth Solutions Report, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org