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Industry Spotlight > Mergers and Acquisitions

Cetera Takes Minority Stake in $2.5B Firm

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What You Need to Know

  • Cetera made a strategic, minority investment in Boston-area based CCR Wealth Management.
  • David Borden led CCR’s growth from a two-person firm to a full-service wealth advisory team with over 35 team members, Cetera said.
  • Cetera is also partnering with advisors to provide a suite of succession solutions.

Cetera Financial Group said Monday it made a strategic, minority investment in CCR Wealth Management, which is based in the Boston area and manages $2.5 billion in client assets.

Cetera didn’t specify how much of an investment it made and didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

“The move represents a nascent option in the independent broker-dealer space,” Cetera said in a news release. “Now, select advisors can opt to have Cetera take a minority stake in their firm and utilize agile, proprietary growth solutions and technology to profoundly grow assets.”

Cetera is “selective in the firms we support with this type of investment and are proud to partner” with David Borden, an industry veteran who serves as CCR managing partner, according to Cetera CEO Adam Antoniades.

“To me, David and his formidable team represent the ‘practice of the future,’” Antoniades said in a statement. “It’s tremendously rewarding to offer advisors an additional path, outside of our succession and buyout solutions.”

Antoniades added, “This truly puts Cetera’s skin in the game, so to speak. We win if the advisor wins, meaning the practice grows exponentially. Based on the success we’ve seen with CCR, we look forward to more of these selective investments.”

Borden led CCR’s growth from a two-person firm to a full-service wealth advisory team with more than 35 team members, Cetera said.

“Cetera has helped drive considerable asset growth for CCR Wealth Management since its affiliation with Cetera Advisors” in 2000, and the “investment represents the next step in the evolution of the firms’ partnership,” he said.

Cetera oversaw about $353 billion in assets under administration and $122 billion in assets under management as of Dec. 31, it said.

The firm is also partnering with advisors to provide a suite of succession solutions, including advisor-to-advisor support, business continuity solutions and practice monetization, Cetera said.

As a recent example, Cetera said that, in early 2022, father-son-led team Costanzo Financial Group, which manages over $500 million for clients and had been affiliated with Cetera Advisors for 20 years, approached Cetera looking to preserve its independence as the father neared retirement.

Cetera bought that firm in March 2022, “preserving Costanzo Financial Group’s business structure and relationship with Cetera while enhancing firm operations and growth potential,” according to Cetera.

In January 2021, Cetera acquired financial services firm BAR Financial, which managed almost $4 billion in assets on Cetera’s My Advice Architect advisory platform.

And, in March 2021, Cetera acquired financial services firm MAGIS, an RIA focused on providing financial planning and holistic advice to more than 350 households. The ownership change was designed to “fuel additional growth for the firm,” which manages about $500 million for clients, Cetera said.

The investments in CCR and the other advisory practices “diversify and position Cetera for growth, hedging the impact of mercurial market and economic uncertainty, which have affected others in the sector,” Cetera said.

Cetera was recently ordered by a Colorado federal judge to pay close to $9 million to settle allegations brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission in 2019 against the firm over share class selection and revenue sharing infractions.

Cetera must pay close to $6 million in disgorgement, with Cetera Advisors and Cetera Advisor Network paying fines of $1 million each, as well as $990,961 in prejudgment interest, according to the order.

(Pictured: Adam Antoniades, Cetera CEO)


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