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RetireOne Acquires Edelman Financial's Broker-Dealer Unit

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RetireOne — a distributor of fee-based annuities and life insurance policies — has acquired a broker-dealer business from an arm of Ric Edelman’s company, Edelman Financial Engines L.P.

Edelman Financial is selling only the EF Legacy Securities broker-dealer unit.

Edelman Financial itself is still operating as a financial planning and investment advisory firm in Sunnyvale, California.

(Related: Is Edelman Financial Engines’ New Offering a Threat to Rollovers?)

RetireOne bought the broker-dealer business to improve back office support for all registered investment advisors, and especially to advisors who are moving to a fee-based compensation model, from a commission-based model, RetireOne said today in the deal announcement.

Today, many former registered reps who shift to working with RIAs end up abandoning clients, and hundreds of millions of dollars in client assets, RetireOne Chief Executive Officer David Stone said in a statement about the deal.

“With our help, these client assets may no longer be left behind,” Stone said.

Stone said good insurance and annuity back office services can help advisors have a holistic view of all client investments, and opportunities for improving how those assets are allocated.


RetireOne is an arm of Aria Retirement Solutions Inc. of San Francisco. It distributes fee-based annuities and life insurance products from a number of different insurers.

RetireOne and Aria have relationships with about 900 RIAs and fee-based advisors. Those advisors are helping clients manage about $1 billion in retirement savings and income investments.

The Deal

RetireOne and Edelman Financial are not saying how much RetireOne is paying for the broker-dealer business.

Rainey Gray, EF Legacy Securities’ chief compliance officer, will stay with EF Legacy Securities now that it’s part of RetireOne, RetireOne said.

RetireOne will work with Gray to support EF Legacy Securities’ existing accounts and expand the business, RetireOne said.

A report EF Legacy Securities filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this year shows that EF Legacy Securities has its principal place of business in Henrico, Virginia, and ended 2018 with $1.9 million in assets.

— Read RetireOne Adds Great American Annuity, on ThinkAdvisor.

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