© 2020 Arizent. All rights reserved.

Wielding its size advantage, LPL grabs $330M team from Lincoln

Register now

Four financial advisors managing $330 million in client assets left Lincoln Financial Securities for LPL Financial, as the No. 1 independent broker-dealer pitches prospects on its scale and bulked-up recruiting offers.

Richard Flood of Flood Financial Services cites LPL’s size and accompanying resources as the main reason for the South Burlington, Vermont-based practice’s exit from his IBD of 35 years. The firm aligned with LPL on June 1, according to FINRA BrokerCheck, placing its advisory assets on the corporate RIA.

LPL CEO Dan Arnold said last month that the firm was testing larger recruiting packages and striving to improve its services for advisors in up to 100 ways. The firm’s headcount of more than 16,000 advisors has surged above all wirehouses’ after LPL’s acquisition of the assets of National Planning Holdings.

At the same time, however, at least seven major hybrid RIAs have left the No. 1 IBD’s fold since it unveiled policies aimed at increasing the assets on its corporate RIA. Many advisors who had been with NPH’s four IBDs also said that they preferred a smaller IBD and opted for other firms over LPL.

LPL’s size offers advantages, though. In a meeting this week with analysts from William Blair, executives with the firm outlined their plans to spend $115 million on technology this year, according to a note by Chris Shutler. Experts have also identified LPL as a potential suitor for rival Cetera Financial Group.

The team led by Flood, a 48-year veteran of the financial services, wanted to move to the largest IBD “to be able to take advantage of their scale and stability that will allow us to further enhance the level of service our clients have come to know and expect,” he said in a prepared statement.

“LPL’s focus on providing advisors with technology and a depth of resources gives us the opportunity to operate more efficiently and to deepen our client relationships,” Flood said, adding that the firm was also impressed by a specialized team within LPL focused on succession planning and acquisitions.

Thirteen of the top 25 companies generated double-digit growth in 2017 as rivals close in on the perennial No. 1 firm.
June 4

A spokeswoman for Lincoln Financial Network, which is his former IBD’s parent and the No. 9 IBD overall, declined to comment. She notes a company policy against discussing departures.

Flood Financial has five other staff members, in addition to its advisors. Flood and his wife Teena, the firm’s business manager, launched Flood Financial back in 1982, and he first entered the field in the late 1960s, according to a bio on the company’s website.

Their new IBD has laid out strategies aimed at both organic growth and possible further acquisitions. The management team from LPL told the Blair analysts that they’re working on methods of assisting advisors with lead generation and services like a virtual administrator and a virtual CFO, Shutler wrote.

LPL’s willingness to raise its offers of transition assistance for prospective advisors reflects a better potential return on capital in a time of rising interest rates, the executives told the Blair team.

“While advisor recruiting is ‘going well,’ it is too early to say whether higher transition assistance is playing a role,” Shutler wrote. “Management does expect it will be able to gauge success of its new recruiting efforts later this year.”

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.