The Wire

June 26, 2020

Business Planning to Thrive in All Market Conditions with John Furey

With the COVID-19 crisis—or any crisis we run into—we tend to look back at the business and financial decisions we’ve made to see how they are helping or hurting us. In this episode, John Furey, Managing Partner of Advisor Growth Strategies, joins Tony to discuss how you can put plans in place to help your business grow and thrive through challenging times.

John has successfully guided many wealth management businesses through both good and bad times, so listen in as he shares effective ways to plan and prosper. You'll learn how any business can leverage what they have available and make it through this time in an impactful way.

June 24, 2020

Suitcases of cash for RIA M&A deals are one COVID-19 victim, as RIA buyers leverage economic uncertainty to force more risk on sellers

The COVID-19 fallout is infecting the RIA M&A market --  like it's 2015 all over again--with whittled cash and more IOUs at closing.

Buyer's are less indulgent because of the freshened fear of pandemic uncertainty. Only a year ago, they flashed cash in a way that let seller's -- more than ever before --  take the money and run, according to John Furey, managing partner of Advisor Growth Strategies.

June 23, 2020

3 Questions to Ask Before Jumping Into the Bull Market for RIAs

Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many merger and acquisition opportunities in the RIA sector continue to emerge, according to several consultants and executives.

“Acquisition brands” — advisory firms that have done multiple transactions recently and have made M&A a key part of their growth objectives —  are the ones to watch.

These firms “set the pace again in 2019” for M&A activity, said Brandon Kawal, principal of Advisor Growth Strategies, during a recent webcast.

June 18, 2020

Succession Planning Strategy: Convert to an RIA First

Last year, Goldman Sachs dropped a cool $750 million in cash for United Capital, the RIA founded by Joe Duran 15 years earlier. This deal represented further proof the M&A market has been heating up, to say the least. A recent report from RIA consultancy Advisor Growth Strategies showed a 29% year-over-year increase in the EBITDA multiple paid for advisory firms last year. More specifically, the multiple jumped from a median of 5.1x (in 2015-2018) to 6.6x last year.

The global coronavirus pandemic has slightly slowed the pace of dealmaking in recent months, per this Fidelity report, but experts remain optimistic about valuations and dealmaking, particularly since so many buyers have a good bit of cash on hand. The pandemic is also accelerating succession plans because it’s increased the amount of uncertainty in the market.

June 17, 2020

PagnatoKarp learns going it alone has its limits, jumps into the arms of another serial buyer, Cresset, after declaring its independence from HighTower only four years ago

Advisors Paul A. Pagnato and David W. Karp have figured out independence isn't all it's cracked up to be, especially when it comes to succession and tapping into the capabilities of a larger firm. 

The $2.2 billion Reston, Va., RIA has just jumped into the arms of Chicago-based Cresset Asset Management after fleeing Merrill Lynch in 2011 for HighTower Advisors LLC -- also a Chicago-based roll-up -- and then going it alone as PagnatoKarp in 2016. See: Fearless Merrill Lynch team breaks away with $1 billion in broad daylight

June 12, 2020

Cash Deals Rising in RIA M&A

Two of the industry’s most prolific acquirers said on a webinar Tuesday that the meteoric rise in valuations which began in 2019 is showing no signs of slowing in the face of the pandemic, while cash considerations are now the dominant characteristic of deal structures.

The webinar, entitled Fact Versus Fiction: Investigating the “Truth” in Deal Structureswas hosted by RIA management consultant Advisor Growth Strategies and sponsored by BlackRock.

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