Why Trust Company of America Is on Track to Double Its Assets

Several macro trends within the industry have contributed to the custodian's growth over the past 6 years

TCA CEO Josh Pace. TCA CEO Josh Pace.

By the end of next year, according to president and CEO Josh Pace, Trust Company of America (TCA) expects to have twice the assets it had six years ago.

TCA is a noncompetitive provider of custody, technology and advisory services exclusively for RIAs that provides fully integrated real-time technology, consultative services and back office support for more than 7,500 advisors. TCA currently has around $17 billion in assets under custody.

“We’ve been on a pretty good growth trajectory,” Pace said during a recent visit to ThinkAdvisor’s New York office.

Pace has been at TCA for more than five years and assumed the role of CEO in 2015 after serving as the firm’s chief business officer, where he led the sales and revenue generation and expanded into more than 80 new advisor relationships.

Pace attributes TCA’s growth in part to many of the macro trends affecting the industry — like the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule, the flight away from commission models, and mergers and acquisitions.

“Whether it’s DOL or just the general change in the industry, I think it’s part of the reason why we’ve had such a good run in growth,” Pace said.

Another trend that’s supporting TCA’s growth trajectory is the movement toward fee-based models because TCA supports those fee-based assets.

“That’s a big macro trend,” Pace explained. “Think about, aside from consolidation of broker-dealers, you’re seeing a flight from an asset category of commission-based products into the fee arena. That’s a great macro trend — not just for us — but for, I think, those that are like us. That’s part of what fuels the growth.”

Mergers and acquisitions also create “a lot of opportunity for folks like us,” Pace said.

He gave the example that if a broker-dealer gets sold, there are some of those advisors that are going to move along with the merger and there are some that are not.

“They’re going to be seeking alternatives. They may want to work with a broker-dealer that fits them a little better; great, we can help guide them in that arena,” Pace explained. “They may want to fall into a TAMP and forgo all the commission-based stuff; great, there’s an answer for that. Or maybe, they’re like ‘hey, I’m ready to go it alone.’”

Beyond macro trends, TCA also made a strategic choice that Pace credits for helping the firm’s growth.

A couple of years ago, according to Pace, TCA made the strategic decision to have an open architecture bias.

“If you were to talk to TCA five years ago, it was sort of a closed ecosystem,” he explained. “…there were no bridges to other technologies.”

The company then moved into an open infrastructure that allowed advisors to seamlessly work with technology partners, like Redtail or Riskalyze, and have data moving in real time between parties.

--- Check out TCA Integrates With Financial Planning Software Provider RightCapital on ThinkAdvisor.

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