Advisory M&A

Adviser Investments and Ropes Wealth combine to make $15B RIA; Sanctuary snags another advisory from Merrill; Trusted Wealth brings $465M to Commonwealth; and more.

Adviser Investments, Ropes Wealth Merge Into $15B Firms

Adviser Investments LLC has acquired Ropes Wealth Advisors to create a $15 billion registered investment advisory with more than 185 employees, including wealth advisers, portfolio managers and fiduciary and financial planning specialists, according to an announcement.

The Newton, Massachusetts-based Adviser Investments is an RIA serving families, businesses, foundations and institutions. Boston-based Ropes Wealth Advisors supports families, trusts and institutions. The management of Adviser and Ropes Wealth will own the combined firm in partnership with Summit Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm. Summit made a growth capital investment in Adviser Investments in 2020 to support national expansion.

“With this combination, we will deepen our leadership position serving wealth management clients with complex planning needs,” Mario Ramos, CEO of Adviser Investments, said in a statement. “Equally important, this transaction reinforces our role as one of the leading merger partners of choice for RIA firms and other independent wealth management firms across the country.”

Ropes Wealth Advisors, previously a wholly owned subsidiary of the global law firm Ropes & Gray LLP, will act as the preferred provider of wealth management services to Ropes & Gray clients and partners, according to the announcement. Furthermore, the co-chairs of the private client group at Ropes & Gray, Brenda Diana and Martin Hall, will join the Adviser Investments management team, with Diana as chief fiduciary officer and Hall as managing director.

Sanctuary Wealth Snags Crescent Harbor Advisory from Merrill

Sanctuary Wealth has brought on Crescent Harbor Private Wealth and its $200 million in client assets.

The Jersey City-based Crescent Harbor team, including CEO and founder John Araneo and managing partner Jason Greenfield, will join Indianapolis-based Sanctuary. The team is the 32nd breakaway from Bank of America Corp.-owned Merrill to join Sanctuary, according to the firm’s announcement.

Crescent Harbor provides wealth management to high-net-worth individuals, families, corporate executives and business owners, with specialization in clients who are selling a business, retiring or managing an inheritance or divorce.

“Having spent their entire careers in the wirehouses, John and Jason decided that the time was right to explore independence,” Vince Fertitta, president of wealth management at Sanctuary Wealth, said in a statement.

Araneo began his career in 1998 and worked at Merrill and Morgan Stanley. Greenfield, managing partner of Crescent Harbor, became a wealth manager with Merrill in 2019 after a decade working in the hospitality industry.

The Sanctuary Wealth network of partner firms operates in 28 states and has about $25 billion in assets under advisement.

Trusted Wealth Brings $465M in Client Assets to Commonwealth

Trusted Wealth Partners has brought its $465 million in client assets to Commonwealth Financial Network, according to an announcement.

Omaha, Nebraska-based Trusted Wealth Partners, including Nathan Brobst, Clint Eikmeier, Jim Lammers, Matt Peters, Mark Slattery and their seven-person support staff will join the Waltham, Massachusetts-based Commonwealth network of advisers. Trusted Wealth provides investment management, financial planning, retirement and estate planning, and insurance services.

“The efficiencies Commonwealth creates will make it easier to do business, allowing us to spend less time on administrative tasks and more time working with clients, many of whom have complex investment management and financial planning needs,” Slattery said in a statement.

Commonwealth partners with more than 2,100 independent financial advisers overseeing more than $243 billion in client assets.

IEQ Capital Adds Wealth Advisers, New Boston Office

IEQ Capital LLC, a wealth management firm with more than $20 billion in assets under management, announced it has added wealth advisers Jeremy Wenner and Adam Beard to its firm

Wenner and Beard, along with five team members, provide customized and comprehensive advisory and investment management solutions to families with a focus on serving entrepreneurs, executives and professional investors. With the hire, IEQ will be opening an East Coast office in Boston, with Beard as its managing director. Wenner will join IEQ’s San Francisco Bay Area office as a managing director.

“We believe IEQ’s expansion to Boston will allow us to enhance our service offering in the region and establish new relationships,” Alan Zafran, IEQ’s co-CEO and founder, said in a statement. 

Other team members joining IEQ include Stephen Griffiths, senior director, and Sanhita Bhattacharya, senior associate, in Boston, along with Dan Fleming, associate director; Jonathan Barnes, associate director; and Collin Sapp, associate, in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

Las-Vegas Based Advisory Joins LaSalle St.

LaSalle St. Securities LLC, a network of wealth management firms including an independent broker/dealer and two registered investment adviser platforms, has acquired Link Financial Advisory. Las Vegas-based Link Financial Advisory, which oversees $150 million in client assets, will leave Securities America, a member of Advisor Group, to join Chicago-based Lasalle St.

Founder and CEO Richard London and four other advisers will join LaSalle St., and London will participate in the firm’s equity ownership program, which offers a percentage of its equity to affiliated and qualified reps and advisers, according to the announcement. London’s team also have offices in Montana and California and provides financial planning, asset management, wealth management and retirement planning to clients.

London started Link Financial Advisory in 2014 after working as a wealth adviser for Mutual Omaha Bank and Contango Capital Advisors, the RIA for Zions Bancorp.