Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. (LTS) announced Friday that it has acquired Highland Capital Brokerage, Inc., an independent insurance brokerage company that delivers life insurance, annuities and long-term care solutions to investment and insurance providers, for approximately $42 million.
“The acquisition of Highland marks Ladenburg’s entrance into the wholesale life insurance marketplace and reflects our commitment to building a strong, diversified financial services organization,” said Phillip Frost, Ladenburg’s chairman and principal shareholder, in a press release. “We are excited to welcome Highland’s management, principals and associates to the Ladenburg Thalmann family and look forward to their continued success.”
Ladenburg President and CEO Richard Lampen added in a statement, “This acquisition marks an important step in our expansion into this higher-margin, attractive wholesale distribution channel.”
Highland brings 10 regional offices, 12 principals, 90 sales vice presidents, 55 corporate employees and approximately 135 field office staff to the Ladenburg family. For the 12 months ended June 30, Highland had revenues of nearly $46 million.
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The current senior management team, along with Highland’s CEO Jim Gelder, will continue to operate Highland as a standalone business at its existing headquarters in Birmingham, Alabama.
“Ladenburg’s commitment to preserving the management and culture of the firms it acquires affords us the flexibility to continue operating our business with no disruption to our firm principals, employees or clients, and presents exciting opportunities for all of our stakeholders,” Gelder said in a press release. “With the support of a publicly traded parent company, we will be better positioned to deliver a greater breadth and quality of services, particularly to our institutional clients and independent insurance producer partners.”