BOSTON - LPL Financial is increasingly targeting top producers and large enterprises.

“It’s a trend we’ve seen over the last three to four years,” David Symecko, LPL’s senior vice president for business development told Financial Planning in an interview while at LPL’s Focus conference.  “The business is going upmarket, wealthier clients are facing more complex issues and the momentum is rising.”

As a result, LPL’s elite business development division, the Masters team, is switching into high gear by hiring institutional experts and harnessing the firm’s considerable resources. LPL is beefing up the unit specifically to compete for advisors bringing in at least $2 million in revenue annually. The broker-dealer also is targeting large enterprises with around 100 advisors or more, with the capability of supporting top producers.

The average production of newly recruited advisors is now around $4 million to $5 million, says Steve Pirigyi, LPL’s executive vice president of business development. Revenue from those top producers makes up around 25% of total revenue of newly recruited advisors, according to LPL, and the percentage continues to grow.

DOGFIGHT

 But LPL knows it’s in a dogfight to stay competitive in a sellers’ market.

“Everybody’s competing for the top producers,” says Symecko, who heads a six-man recruiting team out of Houston.

Wirehouse advisors, he says, are often looking for better levels of service, open architecture, their own practice and a better quality of life. Independents also want better service, an increase in top line revenue and profit margin, and a hybrid RIA-broker-dealer business model.

“These are things we can provide,” he maintains.

BIG FISH

Large enterprises, or OSJs (Offices of Supervisory Jurisdictions), seeking greener pastures also find a hybrid RIA-BD opportunity “real attractive,” Symecko says.

LPL’s sales pitch to OSJs includes the opportunity to leverage the giant firm’s recruiting sales force and overall size and scale as well as pointing out that they won’t be alone – LPL already has more than 30 large enterprise firms.

 “A lot of them don’t want to be the only large fish in the pond,” Symecko says. “They want to talk to the other big fish.”

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