ISC Group Announces New Ownership Group


Institutional Securities Corporation (ISC) has been acquired by a team led by Scott A. Hayes, the firm’s executive vice president.



The terms of the deal were not disclosed. Hayes will assume the role of president and chief executive, and Terry L. Hill, ISC’s founder and selling owner, will continue in a consultative capacity for a minimum of five years, ensuring a smooth transition.

Some negative trends in the industry—“specifically the increased costs of running compliance programs and shrinking margins due to fee compression and high rep payouts”—have resulted in a contraction of the independent broker/dealer market, Hayes told PLANADVISER.

However, Hayes feels there are still opportunities for independent firms like ISC that are willing to make the effort and adapt to a changing regulatory environment. “I do not have any specific regulations in mind, but as the firm’s CCO, I can attest that there is seemingly always something new and potentially onerous on the horizon for the small, independent firms like ours,” he said.

Hayes said that he intends to lead the firm using the same value-added perspectives that Hill has instilled in him. “Our advisers can choose to clear their business with anyone,” Hayes said. “They choose ISC because we view them as our business partners.”

Plans include ramping up qualified retirement plan assets under management through the firm’s fiduciary services, building assets on the firm’s managed platforms, expanding product and service offerings to clients, and selectively expanding the firm’s adviser base.

“There are a lot of things that we can do for our advisers that don’t work inside the large firm model,” Hayes said. “We don’t require our advisers to fit in our box, but, rather, we work with them to help them achieve their objectives based on their own business models.”

Hayes joined ISC in 1997. He is a CFA charterholder, and holds a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University and a master’s of business administration from Southern Methodist University. He is the immediate past president of the National Tax Sheltered Accounts Association (NTSAA) and serves on the board of directors of the American Society for Pension Professionals and Actuaries (ASPPA).

Institutional Securities Corporation is a broker/dealer and registered investment adviser with headquarters in Dallas.