Independent broker-dealer HD Vest says close to 1,000 advisors and about 700 other financial professionals attended its recent national conference, CONNECT2015, in Dallas. President George W. Bush addressed the group in the opening session.
“President Bush gave an apolitical speech about leadership,” said HD Vest President & CEO Roger Ochs, in an interview with ThinkAdvisor. “The advisors loved him. It was a great conference.”
Plus, the IBD is “having a great year” when it comes to adding advisors, Ochs says. “We have 620 new advisors as our goal in 2015 and are on track to meet it.”
There are about 220,000 tax professionals with their own offices nationwide. “It’s a wide-open market,” he explained.
(HD Vest has about 4,500 affiliated independent advisors with roughly $37 billion in client assets.)
Advisors who attended the conference had access to some 100 small-group breakout sessions on topics such as business growth and social media. In addition to Bush, they also heard from composer and conductor Eric Whitacre, Hartford Funds strategist John Diehl and Erik Wahl, a graffiti artist, best-selling author and entrepreneur.