NPH, LPL practices bring 20 more advisors to Securities America

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Securities America nabbed two more practices from National Planning Holdings to bring its total haul from NPH to more than 215 advisors with $8 billion in client assets following the LPL Financial deal.

A major hybrid RIA practice with Securities America also added a sole practitioner from LPL as part of three moves consisting of 20 advisors managing a combined $716 million, the firm announced this week. The suburban Omaha, Nebraska firm constitutes the ninth-largest independent broker-dealer.

Aron Sommer’s, which stands for 'one point of care,' brought nine advisors with $319 million in assets to Securities America from Invest Financial, while Michael Gandet’s super office of supervisory jurisdiction moved from National Planning with 10 advisors with $220 million in assets.

In addition, Wayne Wagner’s Vizionary Wealth Management joined Securities America hybrid RIA WealthPlan Partners from LPL with $177 million in assets.

LPL in February completed its acquisition of the assets of NPH’s four IBDs with a predicted retention of 2,000 advisors with as much as $75 billion in client assets. LPL’s estimate, which it released after the first half of the transition, would mean that roughly 1,200 advisors with up to $35 billion went elsewhere.

Rivals like Advisor Group, Cetera Financial Group, Commonwealth Financial Network and Securities America, a Ladenburg Thalmann IBD, made a strong recruiting push following the Aug. 15 purchase. Meanwhile, Wagner had embarked on a 15-month search for a new BD, he says.

Recruiter Debbie Wallen of Diamond Consultants led him through a process that included research of 80 firms, interviews with 50 IBDs and face-to-face meetings with 30 of them, according to Wagner, president of the Wilmington, Delaware-based firm.

His choice of WealthPlan came down to technology, pricing and flexibility, he says. WealthPlan’s platform allows for a program of tailored investments outside of a corporate RIA, says Wagner, who praises LPL’s recent fee cuts but notes the impact of other changes.

“At the same time, they’re making it harder to make a move towards an internal hybrid. That’s a business decision on their part. From my end, I had to make a business decision as well,” says Wagner. He wishes LPL well, but his firm had expanded beyond its services after growing up with it, he says.

A spokesman for LPL didn’t respond to a request for comment. The No. 1 IBD added 953 advisors from NPH in the first half of the transition, according to its latest earnings report, along with two Securities America practices of at least $50 million in client assets switching to LPL during the second half of 2017.

Vizionary counts about 180 families as clients, with most of them coming from the pharmaceutical, medical device, life sciences and biotechnology fields. Wagner had spent more than 17 years with LPL before his Jan. 31 move, according to FINRA BrokerCheck.

WealthPlan owners and fellow ex-LPL advisors Todd Feltz, Wade Behlen and Brent O’Mara aligned their hybrid RIA and super OSJ with Securities America in November 2016. The Omaha-based firm has 22 advisors and $988.1 million in assets under management, its latest Form ADV shows.

Sommer had aligned with Invest for four years before LPL acquired its assets and he left Dec. 18, according to BrokerCheck. His Worthington, Ohio-based group services employer-sponsored retirement plans, as well as advisors specializing in the service.

Gandet spent the past five years of his 25-year financial services career with National Planning before coming to Securities America on Nov. 1, BrokerCheck shows. Based in Manahawkin, New Jersey, Gandet leads 10 advisors located around the northeast and focusing on retirement income distribution.

“That three such distinct groups decided to join Securities America demonstrates the strength of our platform and our success in helping independent financial advisors achieve their growth goals,” Gregg Johnson, executive vice president of branch office development and acquisitions, said in a statement.

Securities America in mid-February unveiled 65 other ex-NPH advisors moving to the firm with two super OSJs from Invest and National Planning. The firm, the largest of Ladenburg’s five IBDs with 2,200 advisors and $72 billion in client assets, saw record recruiting in 2017.

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Recruiting Career moves Independent BDs Independent advisors RIAs OSJs Gregg Johnson Securities America LPL Financial National Planning Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services