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Focus Adds $1.4B RIA in Chicago Area

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Focus Financial Partners said early Monday that Strategic Wealth Partners, a Deerfield, Illinois-based RIA with $1.4 billion-plus in client assets, had joined its partnership. This means Focus has brought on 23 new partners in 2014.

“We are thrilled to welcome Strategic Wealth Partners to our partnership. Their dedication to client-centric service and their desire to grow make them an excellent fit for our growing partnership of entrepreneurial firms,” said Rudy Adolf, founder and CEO of Focus, in a statement.

“Focus has successfully completed 23 RIA and broker lift-out transactions year to date,” Adolf explained, “17 of which were on behalf of our partner firms, adding billions in assets along with new talent.” 

The partnership group, which has yearly revenues of more than $325 million, sees more room for expansion in the nation’s third-largest urban area.

“Given the highly fragmented nature of the Chicago RIA market, we see tremendous potential for Strategic Wealth Partners to further establish a regional presence in and around Chicago,” said Vamsi Yadlapati, managing director at Focus, in a press release.

Principals David J. Copeland and Neal H. Price, each of whom has been in the investment industry for more than 20 years, founded Strategic Wealth Partners in 2008. It includes 14 staff members.

Copeland cut his teeth in the business at Merrill Lynch (BAC) in the 1980s, while Price started his career at Everen Securities in the 1990s, according to FINRA records.

“We are delighted to partner with a firm that can help us maintain our acute focus on client service, while simultaneously deploying capital and deal expertise to grow through strategic acquisitions,” said Price, in a press release.

Other firms that have joined Focus so far this year include Gratus Capital Management of Atlanta; Flynn Family Office of New York; Summit Financial Wealth Advisors of Lafayette, Louisiana; Quadrant Private Wealth of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; and IFM Capital Advisors of Denver.

“We ultimately decided that Focus was the right partner for us based on their stellar track record of providing unparalleled access to capital and growth support as well as their ability to attract additional talent to our bench,” Copeland said.

In late October, Focus Financial said that its partner firms had closed six deals in as many months, adding $1 billion in assets under management. In addition, the group helped a partner firm add an advisor who had initially struck a succession agreement with the individual rep.  

Securities America News

Ladenburg Thalmann-owned (LTS) Securities America said Monday that it recruited three advisors with some $130 million in total client assets and produce over $1 million in yearly revenue.

The three — Shannon Brusseau, Antonio Reyna and Dan Gay Jr. — join the Financial Institutions unit of the independent broker-dealer.

Houston-based Reyna was previously affiliated with LPL Financial (LPLA), while Gay worked for Wells Fargo (WFC) in Wilmington, N.C.

“Advisors working in banks and credit unions require a unique set of resources to both grow their practice and increase the bottom line of their institution,” said Michael Anderson, first vice president of Financial Institutions at Securities America, in a statement. “We look forward to offering Shannon, Antonio and Dan the support to excel on a professional level and as contributors to their respective institutions.”

Securities America has over 1,800 independent advisors with some $50 billion of client assets as affiliates.

Recently, Securities America (along with LPL Financial and several other IBDs) stopped sales of some nontraded REITs connected with American Realty Capital Properties (ARCP) and its Cole brand. 

— Check out Schorsch Unit Draws State Regulator’s Scrutiny on ThinkAdvisor.


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