The WSR Wealth Exemplar Awards for Hybrid RIA of the Year go to the top three RIA firms that offer fee-based solutions as well as commissionable services in affiliation with a broker-dealer, through either W-2 or independent financial advisors, or both.
Founded in 1996 by Scott Householder, Householder Group Estate & Retirement Specialists supports independent financial advisors across the U.S. with approximately $2.2 billion in AUM. The firm has a holistic-planning approach, offering a wide range of services that encompass estate planning, insurance, retirement income planning, tax planning, investment advice, as well as risk management, including disability and long-term care. Additionally, the firm arranges for wills, trusts, and other estate planning documents through estate planning attorneys. Householder Group’s advisors strive to serve as a one stop shop for their clients’ financial needs.
At the core of the hybrid RIA firm’s success is an emphasis on solutions and services that elevate financial advisors to their next stage of growth. Towards this end, the firm has created a unique opportunity for financial advisors seeking to grow by integrating them as successor advisors of preexisting practices, enabling shared opportunities to drive expanded growth to the practice.
The firm collaborates with successful and experienced financial advisors across the career life cycle. This includes advisors at or nearing retirement, with whom Householder Group works to ensure clients continue to be exceptionally well-served. For advisors who still have years to go before a planned exit from the industry, Householder Group delivers multi-layered support, specialized expertise, and extensive resources to maximize future opportunities.
The clients served by Householder Group’s financial advisors encompass business owners, corporations, charitable foundations, nonprofits and trusts through corporate tax planning, retirement planning, employee benefits, estate planning, insurance and investments.
Co-founded and led by Alex Goss and Neil Turner in 2021, NewEdge Advisors has $20 billion in assets as of Nov. 30, 2023, with over 300 advisor affiliates in over 120 offices. Goss and Turner founded the firm after joining an IBD, then establishing an independent RIA. The firm added 70 advisors from 30 teams in 2023, building on the addition of over 45 advisors in 2022, and now operates in 32 states.
In founding NewEdge, Turner and Goss focused on creating a culture that incorporates advisor feedback and insights into its decision-making processes, as well as flexible affiliation models. The firm introduced a W-2 employment affiliation model in 2022. In December 2023, it added the Ultra High Net Worth NewEdge Bridge Program, enabling its advisors to introduce UHNW clients to the platform, products and services of its sister firm NewEdge Wealth.
NewEdge Advisors and NewEdge Wealth are part of NewEdge Capital Group, which recruited $9.6 billion in expected assets in 2023. NewEdge Capital Group has over $42 billion in client assets.
With an emphasis on organic growth, employee-owned Steward Partners manages $28 billion in client assets with over 200 independent advisors. The firm has experienced rapid growth, with AUM growing 22.4% year-on-year as of Sept. 30, 2023. Crossing the threshold of a decade since its founding, the firm recruited approximately $6 billion in AUM in 2023.
In December, the firm closed its acquisition of Freedom Street Partners, with $3.2 billion in assets and 38 advisors, creating a “proprietary division” that will serve as a vehicle for advisors looking to sell their business to the firm. The firm also offers W-2, 1099 and RIA-only, IAR models for advisors. All affiliation models provide the option of equity in the firm.
In 2023, Steward Partners announced a custodial arrangement with Pershing alongside its existing partnership with Raymond James and a collaboration with VRGL to use its client acquisition and proposal management solution.
James Miller, Contributing Editor & Research Analyst at Wealth Solutions Report, can be reached at ContributingEd@wealthsolutionsreport.com.