May 2024 Financial Advisor and RIA Moves and Acquisitions

In May 2024, Dakota tracked significant activity in the financial advisor and RIA industry, driven by increased demand for personalized financial planning. LPL Financial led in transaction volume, leveraging its expansive network and technology. Merrill Lynch and UBS also saw significant activity, thanks to their global reach. Rockefeller Capital Management and Wealth Enhancement Group had fewer transactions, focusing on targeted acquisitions and organic growth. Raymond James maintained steady performance with a balanced approach.

One of the larger acquisitions this month, Focus Financial Partners affiliates Buckingham Wealth Partners and The Colony Group have reached an agreement to merge, creating a combined entity that will manage $115 billion in assets under management as both a wealth manager and investment outsourcing firm. Adam Birenbaum, CEO of Buckingham, will lead the new combined entity, while Michael Nathanson will continue as the CEO of Focus Financial. Buckingham, known for its evidence-driven investing, joined Focus in 2007 and offers fiduciary services across the U.S. Both leaders have been discussing the potential of joining forces for many years. This merger will create a substantial Registered Investment Advisor, combining nearly 1,200 employees and over 90 offices, serving tens of thousands of clients and enhancing client and advisor opportunities by leveraging the firms' complementary services and extensive capabilities. The deal is anticipated to be finalized by July 1. The merged entity will operate under a new brand identity, set to be unveiled later in the third quarter or early in the fourth quarter of 2024.

One of the larger moves this month, JPMorgan has acquired a Merrill Lynch team, which generates $10 million in annual revenue from managing $28 billion in assets. The team, known as the Gray-Polverini Team, includes financial advisors Eric Gray and Lance Polverini. They are joined by Investment Associate Drew Sapede and Client Associates Michelle Blackmer and Irma Deluna. Eric Gray brings a wealth of experience, having worked at Merrill Lynch for 24 years and at Goldman Sachs for seven years prior. Lance Polverini also has significant industry experience with a 16-year tenure at Merrill Lynch. The team is based in Los Angeles and specializes in servicing ultra-high-net-worth clients.They will be reporting to David Berger, JPMorgan's market leader for the Southwest region. This recruitment is considered one of the largest and most significant in the financial advisory industry. 

Independents:

Timothy J. Heisterkamp and Max Neese have recently transitioned to LPL Financial, where they continue to serve their clients under the name Journey Financial based in Jefferson, Iowa. Formerly with Cambridge, they manage approximately $200 million in assets. Heisterkamp, who began his career in financial advisory in 1998 after teaching high school economics, initially sparked Neese's interest in finance during a guest lecture at Neese's high school. This inspiration led Neese to shadow Heisterkamp during college and subsequently join his practice after graduating. Both hold CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER designations. Together, along with Registered Assistant Kim Bendickson, they are committed to fostering enduring relationships with their clients as trusted advisors. They provide a comprehensive array of financial services, from education planning to estate management, aiding clients in making informed decisions throughout various life stages.

Mitchell "Mitch" and Wesley "Wes" McCann have transitioned from Ameriprise to LPL Financial. Through this transition the father-son duo has established Guardian Partners Wealth Management, an independent financial practice located in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. Guardian Partners manages approximately $240 million in assets, which they brought over from Ameriprise. Mitch has over 35 years of experience in financial services, first registering with Prudential Securities back in 1988. Wesley joined his father five years ago and both focus on a clientele that is approaching or already in retirement. The team, including office manager Nicole Obarto, prioritizes personalized financial planning to maximize client assets in retirement.

Private Advisor Group, a leading independent wealth management firm, has welcomed Ethan Campbell from Stones River Wealth Management to its network. Campbell, along with team members Collin Reed and Alana Hale, are based in Woodbury, Tennessee, and manage approximately $90 million in client assets.Campbell chose Private Advisor Group due to its multi-custodian offering, enhanced suite of technology, and competitive economics. He is a 2012 finance graduate from Middle Tennessee State University. Prior to launching Stones River Wealth Management in 2020, he was a financial advisor with Edward Jones. 

Rockefeller Capital Management has hired a private wealth team from Morgan Stanley in Charlotte, North Carolina, consisting of Adam B. Landau and Ramy Georgy. The duo, who managed $1.4 billion in assets, generated $4.5 million in annual revenue. They were previously part of Morgan Stanley's private wealth division that includes around 300 dedicated teams. Adam Landau is an experienced financial advisor and Managing Director, having begun his career at Morgan Stanley’s Smith Barney in 1992 and later joining Morgan Stanley in 2005. Throughout his tenure, he has held significant positions, including Executive Financial Services Director and Alternative Investments Director. In addition to his professional responsibilities, Adam is deeply engaged in community service and philanthropy, serving on various boards and committees. Ramy Georgy is a financial professional based in Tampa, Florida, who began his career at Morgan Stanley in 2012. Over the years, he has developed his expertise in portfolio management and specializes in the coordination and execution of restricted stock plan transactions.

South Carolina's Apollon Wealth Management has welcomed Ryan Shanks as their new Chief Growth Officer. Shanks, the founder and CEO of FA Match—a software firm focused on financial advisor recruitment—is currently overseeing the winding down of FA Match and the sale of its intellectual property. As Shanks transitions from his role at FA Match, he will still offer his support to the company, but his main focus will be on his new responsibilities at Apollon. His role will involve recruiting elite advisors, encouraging growth through partnerships with current advisors, and leading various business development efforts. Prior to establishing FA Match, Shanks accumulated significant experience in recruiting, business development, and consulting across multiple firms. He was also the founder and leader of Finetooth Consulting for 14 years, and he served on the board of directors at Riskalyze, which is now known as Nitrogen Wealth. With this extensive background, Shanks is poised to drive substantial growth and innovation at Apollon Wealth Management.

Financial advisors Logan Reed, James "Jim" English III, Michael Allegra Jr., and Matthew Fleming, have recently launched a new independent practice, Thimble Island Private Wealth. This venture was created through their affiliation with LPL Financial's LPL Strategic Wealth Services. Previously, these advisors were part of Janney Montgomery Scott, managing around $830 million in assets. Thimble Island Private Wealth operates out of New Haven, Connecticut, where the team aims to provide concierge-level, personalized service to their clients. They have been recognized as the 2024 Forbes Best-In-State Wealth Management Team. Their approach focuses on giving each client detailed and individualized attention to meet their specific financial needs. The team has extensive experience in the financial services industry with English leading the charger with over 50 years of experience. 

Financial advisor, Matt Sheffield, has established Burlwood Wealth through his affiliation with LPL Financial's LPL Strategic Wealth Services. Previously, he managed approximately $275 million in assets while with UBS. Burlwood Wealth represents Sheffield's transition into the independent advisory space. Sheffield initially started his career in Silicon Valley, then transitioned into medical sales. By 2005, he realized his true calling as a financial advisor. He values the profession for its combination of critical thinking, building relationships, and the chance to establish significant connections. Beyond his financial pursuits, Matt enjoys a variety of hobbies including woodworking, mountain biking, listening to live music, and reading. He also finds fulfillment in giving back to the community, volunteering as the team photographer for Lewis and Clark High School’s football team.

Raymond James has added financial advisors Mike Sikes and Shaley Sikes to its independent advisor channel. The couple are founding partners of Sikes Wealth Partners, based in Edmond, Oklahoma. Mike and Shaley offer personalized investment services and advice, targeting business owners, families, women investors, and individuals nearing or already in retirement. Before joining Raymond James, they managed approximately $200 million in assets at Edward Jones. Mike served as a financial advisor at Edward Jones for seven years and is actively involved in his community, participating in the Guthrie Oklahoma Rotary Club, the United Way of Logan County advisory board, and Crossings Community Church. Shaley, who co-founded Sikes Wealth Partners with Mike, was also at Edward Jones for nearly 12 years and holds AAMS and CRPC designations. Like Mike, she is deeply engaged in community activities. Together, they bring a wealth of experience and a strong commitment to community involvement to their roles at Raymond James.

Raymond James recently welcomed a team of five advisors from Commonwealth Financial Network. This group, operating under the name Lightship Wealth Strategies, oversees around $800 million in client assets. Located in Newton Lower Falls, Massachusetts, the team comprises Jonathan Wolff, Scott Schutte, Justin Turcotte, Jack Wolff, and Evan Mattern. Each member boasts a significant background in the financial sector, highlighted by Jonathan Wolff's extensive career since 1983. He was with Commonwealth Financial Network for the last 18 years, following a 23-year stint at Northwestern Mutual Investment Services. Scott Schutte and Justin Turcotte also bring a wealth of experience and multiple industry certifications from their time at Commonwealth. Jack Wolff, who entered the financial field in 2015, previously worked with State Street Global Advisors, while Evan Mattern, the most recent addition to the industry, started in 2017.

Chris Kitaeff, a seasoned financial advisor, has transitioned to LPL Financial, joining Maher Wealth Management as a managing director. Previously with Merrill Lynch, he brings with him roughly $385 million in managed assets. Kitaeff, who began his career as a hedge fund analyst on Wall Street, followed his father into wealth management, joining his father's practice in 2009. He has received the Forbes Best-in-State Advisor Award from 2021 to 2024. Kitaeff values deep personal connections with his clients, a trait that has marked his 15-year career alongside his now-retiring father. His move to LPL was influenced by a desire for greater independence and was facilitated by reuniting with former colleague Thom Maher, who founded Maher Wealth Management in 2023.

Concurrent Investment Advisors has recruited three advisors from Raymond James, bringing with them a total of $500 million in assets. Jeff Breese and Brent Mekosh, who previously worked independently at Raymond James, have teamed up to form The Wealth Stewards within Concurrent. They operate out of Phoenix and Chandler, Arizona. Shortly after establishing their new team, they were joined by Ryan Reming, another ex-Raymond James advisor. Jeff Breese started his financial career in 2000 at Sun Life Financial and has since worked with Rafferty Capital Markets, John Hancock Advisers, and Raymond James. Brent Mekosh began his financial career in 1997 with Florida-based CMJ Partners and has also been associated with Wagner Stott & Co., Bear Wagner Specialists, and Raymond James. Ryan Reming joined the financial sector in 2014, has been affiliated with C

LPL Financial has welcomed financial advisor Garrett Oczachowski to its platform. Oczachowski was previously with JPMorgan Chase, where he reported managing approximately $280 million in assets. With his transition, Oczachowski has launched Noble Traditions Wealth, an independent financial practice located in Santa Monica, CA. Garrett Oczachowski is a seasoned Financial Advisor with 25 years of experience in the industry. He dedicated 22 years to JPMorgan, where he made his way to Senior Vice President. As the founder of Noble Traditions Wealth, Garrett focuses on aiding his clients in achieving financial independence through stable investment income. Alongside his professional pursuits, Garrett has been actively involved in dog rescue efforts for over 15 years. Together with wife, Lisa, he works with various dog rescue organizations to provide rehabilitation and training to local dogs, helping them find adoptive homes.
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Summit Financial Holdings has introduced a new independent practice named Kyros Private Wealth, based in Naples, Florida. This practice is spearheaded by co-founding partners, William (Bill) E. Clegg IV and Heather Clegg, who oversaw $370 million in assets at UBS. Kyros represents the sixth firm in 2024 to join Summit Growth Partners. As part of this transaction, Kyros will become an affiliate partner of Summit. Bill is the Founding Partner and Private Wealth Advisor of Kyros Private Wealth. Prior to founding Kyros, he was a Senior Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager at UBS Financial Services Inc. – running The Clegg Group. Bill has over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry, starting his career in 1998 at Morgan Stanley. During his career, he has earned notable credentials, including Certified Financial Planner and Certified Investment Management Analyst designations. Heather is a Co-Founder and Managing Director at Kyros Private Wealth, where she manages business development strategies, event planning, and community engagement. She started her career in the financial industry in 2005 with Fidelity Investments. Both she and Bill are actively involved in their community, serving on various boards and committees.

Two teams, the Barnes Group and the Pollard Team, have recently transitioned from Merrill Lynch to RBC, combining for a total of $900 million in client assets. The Barnes Group, managed by David Barnes, oversees $600 million. David Barnes, the head of the Barnes Group, has moved to RBC after a career spanning over 30 years at Merrill Lynch. The Barnes Group also includes Paula Gay, who serves as the assistant vice president and client associate. The Pollard Team, led by Patrick Pollard, handles $300 million in assets. Patrick Pollard, who has been with Merrill Lynch for 22 years, leads the Pollard Team as senior vice president. His team includes senior business associate Paul Sierocinski and client associate Victoria Webster. Both teams will be based in RBC’s office in Bel Air, Maryland, located in the Mid-Atlantic region. 

Tara Blair, a seasoned financial advisor, has transitioned to LPL Financial, with Sage Private Wealth Services. Previously with Lincoln Financial, she brings with her roughly $215 million in managed assets. Tara brings over 25 years of finance expertise to her current role at Sage Private Wealth Services. She previously honed her skills as an auditor at PricewaterhouseCoopers, where she worked with a variety of public and private companies. In the Dallas/Fort Worth region, Tara has led several finance committees and has been an active member on multiple non-profit boards. Tara holds CFP and CPA designations and is part of a five-member team that includes the seasoned consultant H. Crawford Gates, who brings more than 50 years of experience in the industry.

Kalyn Walker has recently joined Raymond James & Associates in their San Diego, California branch, having moved from UBS Financial Services. At UBS, she managed around $450 million in client assets. Walker is accompanied by Sean Clancy, a senior investment portfolio analyst. Her new role is within RayJay’s San Diego branch, which is led by branch manager David Richman. Walker brings over 16 years of experience in the financial services industry to her new position. Her career began at Merrill Lynch, and she spent nearly a decade at UBS before joining Raymond James. Walker has earned the Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA) professional designation. Clancy also joined Walker at UBS as a private banker. 

Edward Jones has strengthened its West Coast presence by hiring Dan Dwyer, a seasoned advisor from JPMorgan. Dwyer joins the Northern California team with extensive experience, having managed over $250 million in client assets. He will operate solo in a Napa, California office, utilizing Edward Jones’ resources to offer comprehensive financial planning and personalized advice. Dwyer's nearly four-decade career also includes stints at Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo. His addition is expected to significantly benefit the firm's clients in the region. 

William Blair has expanded its Private Wealth Management presence in Philadelphia by adding Fernberger Wealth Management. The team, led by managing director and wealth advisor James Fernberger, includes Alex Fernberger and Zach Fernberger, also joining as managing directors and wealth advisors. Previously, the group was with Raymond James, managing $1.2 billion in client assets. The Fernberger team is known for their commitment to clients and personalized investment guidance. James Fernberger has a 45-year career advising high-net-worth individuals, executives, family offices, endowment funds, nonprofits, and corporations on asset management and preservation. He has held senior wealth management roles at Merrill Lynch and Advest, Inc. Alex Fernberger has over 10 years of experience advising individuals, families, and businesses on wealth planning goals, previously working at Merrill Lynch before Raymond James. Zach Fernberger also brings over 10 years of wealth advisory experience, having worked with high-net-worth individuals, families, and organizations, including roles at WisdomTree Asset Management and AXA Advisors. Zach holds certifications as an Accredited Investment Fiduciary and Certified Wealth Strategist. Together, the team offers tailored investment and wealth planning expertise to sophisticated investors.

Lance Dumas and Darryl Carter, seasoned financial advisors, have transitioned to LPL Financial, with Cornerstone Financial Advisers. Previously with Cetera, they brought roughly $225 million in managed assets. Based in Orange County, Calif., Dumas and Carter founded Cornerstone Financial Advisers in 2017 to help families, individuals, and business owners establish their goals and create financial plans. Dumas has 25 years of experience in the financial services industry, holding key leadership roles at national financial institutions. Carter, with nearly 30 years in tax and wealth management services, sold his tax practice last year to focus solely on his investment clients. Dumas, who holds AIF and ChFC designations, and Darryl Carter, a CPA, are joined by Office Manager Nicole Thornton.

The Rockefeller Global Family Office has expanded its team by adding a Chicago-based group of four led by Ronald Ventura, a former Executive Director at Morgan Stanley, where his team managed around $1.4 billion in client assets under the name 227 Family Wealth Management Group. Ronald Ventura, who holds the Family Wealth Director designation—a distinction awarded to less than 4% of Morgan Stanley's 15,000+ advisors—has a background as a CPA at Ernst & Young and previously worked at Merrill Lynch before joining Morgan Stanley in 2011. Joining Ventura are Elias Stambolis, Debra Wilson, and Jackson Wildermuth. Elias Stambolis, now a Private Advisor and Vice President at Rockefeller, has over a decade of investment experience, focusing on advanced planning and investment monitoring. Before joining Rockefeller, Elias was a Financial Advisor at Morgan Stanley and previously managed his own investment fund for five years. He began his career at Fisher Investments and interned at Merrill Lynch, holding a CFA designation.

Financial advisors Alain Verhille and James S. Wood joined LPL Financial to establish Auctus Legacy Private Wealth Management. Previously with Merrill Lynch, they manage approximately $705 million in assets. Based in Oklahoma City, Alain Verhille and James S. Wood bring over 50 years of combined experience to their focus on high-net-worth clients, offering comprehensive wealth optimization and risk reduction strategies for multi-generational families. James Wood, who began his career in 1998, co-founded Auctus Legacy, demonstrating a strong commitment to client service. Alain Verhille, a Certified Financial Planner and Certified Plan Fiduciary Advisor, co-founded the firm after 17 years with Merrill Lynch. Outside of the office, both advisors are deeply involved in their community. They are also joined by Certified Senior Advisors Erikka Moore and Kathy Isernhagen.

LPL Financial has added Pilot Financial, who was previously affiliated with Lincoln Financial. This move follows the recent sale of Lincoln's $115 billion wealth business to Osaic, which closed earlier this month. Pilot has a network of 105 advisors nationwide managing approximately $4.6 billion in assets. Based in Greensboro, N.C., Pilot Financial was founded in 2001 through a series of mergers and has been affiliated with Lincoln Financial since its inception. The firm is managed by partners Chris Roney, Greg Smith, Daryl E. King, and Bill Harnden. It supports independent advisors with strategic planning, coaching, compliance, and administrative assistance. 

Stifel Financial has acquired a team of advisors from Merrill Lynch to establish a new Private Client Group office in Des Moines, Iowa. The Clark Malone Group, spearheaded by Grant Clark and Mark Malone, brings significant expertise to Stifel. Grant Clark, assuming the role of managing director/investments, has been with Merrill Lynch since he began his career in 1999. Mark Malone, stepping in as first vice president/investments, joined Merrill Lynch in 2011. Grant Clark and Mark Malone collectively hold the CPFA, CPWA, CFP, and CRPC designations. They are supported by Sara O'Brien, a registered client service associate, and Lyndsi Truka, a client service associate. Collectively, this team had managed $1.2 billion in assets at Merrill before making the transition to Stifel.

Raymond James has recently welcomed financial advisor Homer Ramirez to their Frisco, Texas office. Ramirez, formerly with J.P. Morgan Securities where he managed around $228 million in client assets, joins with senior registered client service associate Arica Savannah. Operating as Ramirez Family Wealth of Raymond James, they are now part of the Frisco branch under the leadership of branch manager Jon Blair. Homer Ramirez, a seasoned financial advisor with experience at Merrill Lynch, New York Life, and J.P. Morgan, has joined Raymond James. Holding CFP®, CPWA®, and CEPA® designations, he offers significant expertise to his clients, including successful families and business owners. Ramirez is an active member of the Investment and Wealth Institute and the Dallas Estate Planning Council. Arica Savannah, who joined in April 2024, was previously a Private Client Investment Associate at J.P. Morgan and a Private Access Relationship Manager at Fidelity Investments. She holds the CFP® and Wealth Management Certified Professional designations.

Savvy Wealth has expanded its team by hiring four new wealth managers. The new additions include Chase Austin, Josh Branham, Louis Green, and Scott Eichler. Austin, who is a former professional baseball player, is now based in Charlotte, N.C. Austin was previously with MassMutual and Merrill Lynch. Also joining are Josh Branham from Kentucky, with a background at Paragon Private Wealth Management and Merrill Lynch; Louis Green from New York, who has extensive experience with UBS, PNC, and Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management; and California-based Scott Eichler, founder of Standing Oak Advisors, who briefly worked at tech-focused RIA Farther. Over the last three years, Savvy has been actively recruiting wealth managers to its ranks, and has scaled to over $400 million in assets.
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Cetera Financial Group announced that Jeffrey Anthony and Jason Fial, both experienced advisors, have joined the ownership group at Wilde Wealth Management. Wilde Wealth Management, a leading independent firm within the Cetera Advisors community, expanded its ownership group following Cetera's minority investment. Jeffrey Anthony, who began his career at JP Morgan Chase and holds a Certified Financial Planner designation, brings over a decade of experience. At Wilde Wealth, he focuses on Asset Allocation, Investment Solutions, Portfolio Risk Analysis, Wealth/Financial Planning, and Estate Strategies. Jason Fial, in the financial services industry since 2005 and a three-time Million Dollar Round Table qualifier, specializes in comprehensive financial planning for families.

Rockefeller has acquired a five-person advisory team from UBS, which manages about $400 million in assets. The team, known as The Tally McManus Group, includes Private Advisors Rusty Tally, John McManus, and Jon Maldonado, along with Senior Client Associate Nora Rocha and Client Associate Marisa Rubino. The team will now be part of Rockefeller's Global Family Office in Austin, Texas. Tally, the most experienced team member, has 48 years in the industry, with the last 15 at UBS. McManus has 26 years of experience, also with 15 years at UBS, and has worked at Citicorp Securities, Scotia Capital Markets, Lehman Brothers, and Victory Capital Advisers. Maldonado registered in 2013, worked at Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, and joined UBS in 2016 after a brief stint at J.P. Morgan Securities. 

Janney Montgomery Scott has announced the addition of The Goldman Group, based in Ponte Vedra, Florida, to its team. The group, joining from Wells Fargo Advisors, consists of Financial Advisor Rodger Goldman, and Account Executive Steffy Kaiser, Assistant Vice President. Rodger Goldman, with over 30 years in the investment business, is dedicated to helping individuals meet their financial needs by developing financial, retirement, and investment plans tailored to clients' long-term goals and risk tolerance. He began his career with Lehman Brothers in New York in 1988 and moved his practice to Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida in 2009, serving clients in over 20 states. Rodger holds Series 7, 63, and 65 securities licenses. Steffy Kaiser ensures excellent service and client communication within the practice, handling trading, document processing, asset movement, account maintenance, and financial plan preparation. She has been in the industry since 2009, starting her career with Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. She moved with her team to Wells Fargo Advisors in Clearwater, Florida, in 2010 and later relocated to Jacksonville. Steffy holds Series 7 and 66 registrations.

Financial advisors Roger Frank and Michael Ward joined LPL Financial with Frank Financial Concepts. Previously with Berthel Fisher & Co, they manage approximately $200 million in assets. Frank Financial Concepts, with offices in Lincoln, Neb., and Scottsdale, Ariz., is a holistic financial firm committed to helping clients achieve their financial goals. The firm emphasizes client education and encourages clients to share all aspects of their financial situation, including debt, income, investments, savings, and goals, to develop comprehensive financial plans. Frank, who started his career in 1996, founded the firm in 2003 after working for several investment firms. Ward began as an admin right out of college and worked his way up to owning his practice before joining forces with Frank in 2018. Together, they focus on providing clients with holistic financial guidance.

Financial advisors Paul Neves and Darrin Santos have joined LPL Financial with FSI Wealth Management. Previously with Securities America, now part of Osaic, they managed approximately $215 million in assets. The firm was founded in 1995 by Neves and Santos, who collectively bring 65 years of experience in the financial services sector. Neves contributes 34 years of expertise, including 25 years at Securities America. Both Neves and Santos hold a CFP designation, with Neves also holding a ChFC designation. Neves and Santos focus on comprehensive financial planning and wealth management. Their practice prides itself on delivering thorough wealth management services by collaborating with CPAs, attorneys, insurance brokers, and other consultants to address every aspect of their clients’ financial needs.

Highland Partners Financial Services and its team of advisors have transitioned to LPL Financial, having previously been part of Momentum Independent Network, a subsidiary of Hilltop Holdings. Based in Glen Allen, VA, the firm manages approximately $400 million in assets. Founded by Managing Partner Mark Hamby, Highland Partners aims to create a welcoming environment for like-minded advisors to pursue independence and effectively address their clients' investment needs. Hamby, with over 30 years of experience in the financial services industry, is celebrated for his entrepreneurial spirit. The firm supports financial advisors J. Michael Duke, Thomas R. Kirby, Simon M. Joseph, and Elaine B. Miller in Virginia, Bernard R. Theis in Pennsylvania, and Lawrence Karpf, Jean E. Albanese, and Patricia E. Donelan in New Jersey. Each advisor operates an individual practice, focusing on providing families, business owners, and executives with comprehensive investment strategies and holistic financial planning.

Acquisitions & RIAs:

Signature Estate & Investment Advisors (SEIA) has agreed to acquire the Cedar Brook Group, a Cleveland-based firm with $2 billion in assets. This acquisition, expected to close in June, will increase SEIA's assets under management to over $22 billion. Cedar Brook was founded in 2005 by CEO, Bill Glubiak. He has been in the financial services industry for over 20 years. He counsels a select group of corporate executives, professionals, business owners, and other high-net-worth individuals and families on a wide range of financial planning issues. Prior to entering the industry, Bill served as an Electronic Warfare Officer flying the Boeing B-52 aircraft in the active duty United States Air Force, and as a Navigator on the Lockheed Martin C-130 aircraft in the U. S. Air Force Reserves. He is a veteran of the first Gulf War. Outside of work he continues to be involved in the community, aligning with several board committees for nonprofits.  Cedar Brook will represent SEIA’s first major expansion into the Midwest and is its largest deal since partnering with Reverence Capital Partners in 2022. SEIA views the acquisition as a strategic move to enhance its presence in the Midwest.

BIP Wealth has acquired The Money Advisor Group, LLC (TMAG), a Columbus, Georgia-based Registered Investment Advisor specializing in investment management and retirement planning. This acquisition is part of BIP Wealth's new growth initiative, BIP Alliance, aimed at partnering with well-established, reputable firms. TMAG, founded in 2001 by Tim Money, manages around $300 million in assets and is known for providing unbiased financial advisory services. The acquisition aids BIP Wealth's expansion into the Columbus, GA area and provides TMAG's clients, as well as new investors in West Central Georgia and East Alabama, with access to BIP's comprehensive wealth management services and private market investment solutions. Tim Money, along with BIP's Bill Harris and Mark Buffington, who have known each other for over a decade, will continue their partnership, now under the BIP brand.

MAI Capital Management has acquired Harbor Wealth Management. Harbor Wealth is based in Colorado and has a strong presence in Boulder and Denver, CO. The details of the transaction were not disclosed. Harbor, founded in 1988 by Elyse Foster, managed $321 million in client assets at the time of the acquisition. Harbor is set to adopt MAI’s brand identity and will benefit from MAI's extensive internal resources, including HR, operations, and marketing. Elyse Foster and Megan Miller, previously principals at Harbor, will join MAI with the new titles of Senior Wealth Advisor, Managing Director. The integration of Harbor marks MAI’s 37th acquisition since 2018 and its fifth in the year 2024. 

Wealthspire Advisor has acquired Walden Wealth Partners, a financial advisory firm in Beachwood, Ohio. Founded in 2015 by Karin Maloney Stifler and Sarah Hannibal, Walden Wealth Partners brings $420 million in assets under management to Wealthspire. This acquisition marks Wealthspire’s expansion into the Midwest and establishes its first presence in the Cleveland metro area. Walden, known for its financial planning and investment management services, will rebrand to Wealthspire following the acquisition. Specific financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

AlTi Global, Inc., a leading global wealth manager with assets exceeding $70 billion, has acquired Envoi, LLC, a family office that oversees approximately $3.0 billion in assets. This acquisition, which is AlTi’s second major investment following recent funding, supports the company's expansion strategy in the U.S., including key personnel additions in Dallas. AlTi aims to establish itself as the foremost global independent wealth management platform, specializing in alternative investments. The specific financial details of the deal, expected to finalize in the third quarter, were not revealed. Envoi, headquartered in Minneapolis and founded in 2006 by three Piper Jaffray alumni—Brenda Sallstrom, Jim Sand, and Ryan Steensland. The company serves a high net worth clientele, managing all of their assets on a discretionary basis.

Edelman Financial has acquired Soundmark Wealth Management, RIA based in Kirkland, Washington. At the time of the transaction, Soundmark managed over $453 million in assets for more than 250 households. Soundmark specializes in serving medical and technology professionals, as well as small business owners, and was founded by Bill Schultheis.The acquisition enhances EFE's capabilities and presence in the Pacific Northwest, aligning with their strategy of growth through acquiring firms with shared values and client-first focus. Edelman Financial will provide Soundmark clients with more resources and support. This acquisition marks EFE's first in 2024, following a series of acquisitions aimed at increasing planner capacity across various U.S. regions including the Northeast, Northern California, and the South. 

Waverly Advisors has acquired Derbend Asset Management, a Georgia-based investment advisory firm, marking its fourth acquisition in 2024. The acquisition increases Waverly’s AUM to about $11.9 billion. Derbend was founded in 2002 by Chip Beard. His partner, Brian Chustz, joined in 2019, and together they have grown the firm’s AUM to approximately $310 million. Chip and Brian will be joined by their entire team at Waverly and will become the firm’s 20th office location.  Beard began his career as a financial consultant with Merrill Lynch in 1983, where he managed a branch office through the market tumult of October 1987. In 1990, he transitioned to venture capital by purchasing and later selling a software company, Graphic Data Analysis, in Athens, Georgia. He then joined The Habersham Group, a private equity investment firm, establishing offices in Brussels and Lausanne, and overseeing venture capital and private equity projects in Central and Eastern Europe. Returning to the U.S. in 2000, Chip worked as a global strategist for Invesco in Atlanta. In 2002, he founded Derbend Asset Management in Peachtree City, Georgia. The financial and legal specifics of the acquisition have not been disclosed.

Wealth Enhancement Group (WEG) has acquired The Financial Advisory Group. This is a Houston-based RIA managing more than $1.22 billion in client assets. This acquisition adds seven advisors and 14 support staff to WEG's team. The deal marks WEG’s fifth acquisition in 2024 and establishes its third office in Texas. The Financial Advisory Group, founded in 1997 by chairman and CEO Richard J. Alphonso, has developed a niche practice serving oral surgeons, doctors, attorneys, business owners, and family office clients. Alphonso has over 30 years of experience in the financial services industry. He holds a CPA and AEP designation. Wealth Enhancement Group was among the most active RIA acquirers in 2023 and has continued to make a significant impact in 2024.

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Written By: John Washington, Data Research Analyst

John Washington is the Data Research Analyst at Dakota.