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Hightower Grabs Stake in Wellspring: RIA Roundup

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Hightower Advisors says it has invested in Wellspring Associates, a wealth group that focuses on estate, tax and other issues for investors with $50 million or more in assets. By partnering with Hightower, Wellspring can now reach families with assets of $5 million and up.

“As an estate and tax-planning business, the Wellspring transaction represents a new dimension of Hightower’s M&A activity: We are actively using our size and scale to provide additional resources, capabilities and value to our advisors,” said Hightower CEO Bob Oros in a statement.

Founded in 1981, Wellspring has five wealth teams, 15 employees and offices in Atlanta and Dallas.  

“Hightower is providing us with an unprecedented opportunity to collaborate with its advisors and business development team to find ways to add value to our collective client relationships … [and] will help us exponentially grow and scale our client base,” according to Greg Raabe, managing director at Wellspring.

Hightower’s assets under administration were about $77 billion and assets under management $57 billion at year end. It is partly owned by Thomas H. Lee Partners

Allworth-HAM Deal

Allworth Financial, formerly Hanson McClain Advisors, has acquired Houston Asset Management (HAM), which works with $450 million of client assets. This brings Allworth’s total AUM to roughly $8 billion. 

“Despite the current uncertainty in response to COVID-19, we believe it is critical to continue to find great partners and invest in the RIA space,” said Scott Hanson, co-CEO at Allworth, in a statement. 

The Houston firm serves about 680 households and employs five advisors, five client service staff, and three operations staffers. 

This partnership represents Allworth’s eighth acquisition since it began working with Parthenon Capital in 2017. Since mid-2019, Allworth says it has grown from about $4 billion in assets to roughly $8 billion. 

“Our partnership with Houston Asset Management is crucial to helping us build a national firm,” said Pat McClain, co-CEO of Allworth Financial, in a statement. “Houston is a market that we’ve wanted to be in for quite some time, and we’re extremely pleased that we were able to find such a great firm to partner with there.”

Cresset Hire

Cresset Capital, which has some $6 billion in assets, has hired Patrick Canning as vice chairman. Canning will be responsible for business development across the organization.

Prior to Cresset, Canning was a managing partner in KPMG’s Chicago office. He retired from KPMG in March after 38 years with the firm.

“Pat brings tremendous experience in serving clients, from private equity to multi-billion-dollar businesses, and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome him to Cresset,” said Avy Stein, founder and co-chairman of Cresset, in a statement.