TRANSITION TALK

SOLD : September 2018

Posted by FP Transitions on Oct 4, 2018 2:11:03 PM

FP Transitions is pleased to announce the recent sales of financial services practices in the following locations:

  • Santa Cruz, CA • $221,000
  • Southern New Jersey • $668,000
  • Maryland • $652,000
  • Southern Oregon • $261,000
  • San Francisco Bay Area • $583,850
  • Northern California • $1,800,000

VIEW CURRENT LISTINGS HERE 

VIEW COMPLETE LIST OF PRACTICES SOLD 

LIST YOUR PRACTICE WITH FP TRANSITIONS

 

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Topics: SOLD, Selling Your Practice, Buying & Selling, Acquisition

NexGen Update from the San Diego FPA Chapter Symposium

Posted by Kem Taylor on Sep 28, 2018 10:01:00 AM

Earlier this month, I attended the San Diego chapter FPA Symposium. Along with case studies and market information, there were presentations on program updates for the next generation of advisors. I thought it was especially relevant to hear about their NexGen focused resources in light of Michael Kitces’ article published last week on our profession’s looming talent shortage: Competition For Talent And The Rising Shortage Of Next-Generation Financial Advisors. 

Here are some notable programs the San Diego chapter has set up with a focus on the next generation and getting future planners excited about a career in financial services.

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Topics: Events, FPA

Which Exit Path is Right For You?

Posted by FP Transitions on Sep 20, 2018 11:53:53 AM

Which Exit Path is Right for You?

You’ve built a business providing financial insight to a growing community of clients. You’ve fostered this relationship over the years and established a trusted role in their lives. As your clients have moved along their journey as professionals, entrepreneurs, investors, or heirs, they’ve turned to you for advice at each step; and now they are counting on your business to be there and to see the process through to the end. This means that as your clients transition into their own retirement, they will depend on your services more, not less. Regardless of the plan you choose, it is your duty as an independent financial professional to have a plan for client service and support that extends beyond your own career.

One way or another, your path as a financial planner will come to an end. The question is whether or not you’re going to exit on your own terms and in your own way. Are you going to create a plan for your exit that preserves the value and growth of the business you’ve spent your career building? Are you going to make sure your clients’ assets are in good hands for the length of their lifetimes, not just for the length of your career?

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Topics: Business Growth, Business Value, Enterprise, Sustainability, Benchmarking

Maximizing Business Growth Through Benchmarking

Posted by Marcus Hagood on Sep 14, 2018 8:48:16 AM

Maximizing Business Growth Through Benchmarking

The average advisor faces a difficult and increasingly competitive industry. With industry consolidation, technological advances, increased competition, more regulatory oversight, and the need to recruit and retain talent, it has never been more critical that financial advisors use benchmarking as part of their ongoing strategic planning process. With benchmarking, a business owner can improve their relative revenue and expense performance, organizational structure, and marketing results to support growth and achieve short-term and long-term goals. Used in conjunction with your business planning process, benchmarking is a powerful tool to track and build additional enterprise value.

What is Benchmarking and Why it is Critical?

Benchmarking is defined as a measurement of the quality of an organization's policies, products, programs, and strategies as compared against standard measurements of their peers and “best-in-class” providers. An effective benchmarking program provides insight into the connection between your business decisions and the resulting outcomes.

Benchmarking improves performance by identifying and applying demonstrated best practices to sales, operations, and procedures. Comparing the relative performance of their products, services, and sales both externally (against competitors) and internally (with ongoing operations and business decisions) ensures that performance meets or exceeds the competition. The objective of benchmarking is to find examples of superior performance and understand the business practices driving it. Effective business owners utilize benchmarking insights to improve by incorporating these best practices, not through imitation, but through innovation.

The Four “M's” for Incorporating Benchmarking into Business Planning

Every firm has unique needs for benchmarking. For example, the goals of a mature firm versus that of a start-up practice may differ greatly. More established business and solo advisors might be more likely to utilize benchmarks to implement changes that result in increased efficiency and profitability. By contrast, a young developing practice may be more focused on driving and managing growth in clients and revenue.

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Topics: Business Growth, Business Value, Enterprise, Sustainability, Benchmarking

SOLD : July / August 2018

Posted by FP Transitions on Sep 6, 2018 7:00:00 AM

FP Transitions is pleased to announce the sale of financial services practices in the following locations during the months of July and August:

  • Central Coast of California • $3,200,000
  • Cedar Rapids, IA • $807,500
  • Kansas City Area Kansas • $1,198,812
  • Little Rock, AR • $1,450,000
  • Los Angeles, CA • $1,600,000
  • Research Triangle of North Carolina • $1,221,696
  • Southern Coast of Florida • $880,000
  • Southeastern Coast of Florida • $794,037
  • Boca Raton, FL • $988,046

VIEW CURRENT LISTINGS HERE 

VIEW COMPLETE LIST OF PRACTICES SOLD 

LIST YOUR PRACTICE WITH FP TRANSITIONS

 

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Topics: SOLD, Selling Your Practice, Buying & Selling, Acquisition

David Grau Sr., JD on Advisor2Advisor Podcast

Posted by FP Transitions on Sep 4, 2018 11:42:47 AM

Last month FP Transitions President and Founder, David Grau Sr., JD, joined Scott and Pat on the Advisor2Advisor podcast to discuss common concerns related to mergers, and an all too prevalent (and costly) mistake that some mature advisors make when they fail to capitalize on the equity they’ve established by creating a viable succession plan. Listen here.

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Topics: FPT in the News, Mergers, Succession Planning

Reminiscing About the Future : 20 Years in the Making

Posted by David Grau Sr., JD on Aug 27, 2018 7:00:00 PM

Reminiscing About the Future

The foundations for FP Transitions were laid in 1999, and that makes our company officially 20 years old this year. I founded this company thinking that I knew a lot more about running a business than I actually did at the time. Armed with a law school diploma and a lot of energy and drive, I thought I was ready to conquer at least a small corner of the business world. Turns out that running a business takes experience and business knowledge.

Along the way, I picked up an important axiom from a local legend who said, “Don’t confuse activity with achievement.” He was right, but it took me a long time to understand the difference. In retrospect, the first ten years of our company were characterized with a lot of activity; the last ten years is where the achievement took place. The difference maker for us was hiring an outside CEO, Brad Bueermann, to come in and help us turn our activities into achievement on a national scale. Until then, I confused being very busy with being very successful, or at least constantly being on the verge of success. Everything revolved around me and the lawyer in me silently rejoiced. But this wasn’t a good, long-term model because eventually I ran out of time and energy. And I got older!

Advisors often mistake activity for achievement too, thinking that their one-owner practice that is 90% or more fee-based and that grows steadily at 10% or more every year is proof that they have built a business and that success has been achieved. I see a lot of independent advisors building what I call “books” and “practices,” but not very many building sustainable businesses. What I’ve learned over the past twenty years is that, while it is incredibly satisfying to have a practice that revolves around the founder, that isn’t a durable model, and it is not “a business.” At some point, if a practice is to outlive its founder and provide services to the clients for their lifetimes, and not just for the length of the founder’s career, significant changes need to be implemented, and the sooner the better.  

Early on, we grew fast and I became totally focused on our top-line success and growth rate. But there came a time when it was clear that without strengthening the foundational aspects of our business, it would never grow past a certain point. I had to move myself out of the center of operations and learn to build and run a business like a shareholder, not like the star attraction. Making myself a part of a stronger, more diverse, and younger team of professionals was hard, but very necessary – more than just changing my leadership style, we had to change the culture of our operation and, frankly, that was beyond my skill set. So, we brought in outside help – people who knew things that I didn’t – and that made all the difference. 

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Topics: Business Growth, Building Your Team, Business Value, Next Generation, Enterprise, Sustainability

How to Successfully Inquire on the Open Market

Posted by James Fisher, JD on Aug 22, 2018 5:00:00 AM

How to Inquire banner photo

It is without a doubt a “seller’s market” when it comes to financial advisory practices. With an average buyer to seller ratio of 50 : 1, sellers can be picky. Given the sheer volume of qualified buyers that send in inquiries for practices listed by FP Transitions on our open market system, it is extremely important for potential buyers to put their best foot forward and show the seller why they are the “cream of the crop.”  

Remember, your inquiry is the first communication you will have with the seller, who likely knows nothing about you. While we don’t recommend drafting a novel, your inquiry should at a minimum tell the seller enough detail to pique the seller’s interest. Inquiries that merely state, “I have cash,” “Let’s talk,” “I need more information,” or “See our website for more information,” are usually immediately stricken by the selling party from consideration, regardless of how well qualified the inquirer may actually be. This is because experienced and successful buyers take the time to make a strong first impression.

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Topics: Acquisition, Buying & Selling, Open Marketplace

Creative Acquisition Approaches

Posted by Rachel Beckwith on Aug 8, 2018 11:13:29 AM

Creative Acquisition Approaches

One of the fastest ways for independent financial service businesses to grow is to acquire another book of business, adding a lump of clients and their assets to a portfolio all at once. The reality is, however, that setting out to buy a business isn’t that simple. 

First, your business must be able to handle a sudden influx of new clients. Your infrastructure must be strong, you must have the people and resources available to provide quality service to clients immediately following the transition, and you must have the financial means to purchase. Second, the current marketplace right now is favoring sellers more than ever. Not only are we experiencing a 50:1 buyer to seller ratio on the open market, but values are at a high and the competition is stiff. We’re seeing a greater number of experienced buyers vying for a seat at the table, and we’re seeing more savvy sellers making strategic decisions. Finally, being able to meet the asking price alone doesn’t necessarily constitute a good fit. Even if you have everything in place to make an acquisition, you must meet a seller’s specific criteria in other areas to be considered.

The good news is that our industry has several other ways to achieve the same exponential growth as buying a book of business without a “traditional” acquisition. Strategies like mergers, continuity partnerships, succession planning, strategic partnerships, and sell & stay tracks offer alternatives for advisors who may not have the enterprise strength to execute a traditional acquisition strategy. The following avenues take planning and patience, but they can yield incredible growth and value in the long run.

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Topics: Acquisition, Buying & Selling, Mergers, Continuity, Equity Pathways, Sustainability

The Importance of Human Capital – A Founder's Perspective

Posted by David Grau Sr., JD on Aug 1, 2018 10:46:31 AM

Cultivating A Strong Team

Looking back over the past few decades, you can easily spot the trends and physical changes in our industry. Since 2000, when FP Transitions formally opened its doors, I’ve seen our profession, especially in those working under an independent broker-dealer or hybrid model, steadily shift to fee and advice-based solutions. Early on, most practices that we represented were made up primarily of transaction or non-recurring revenue; today advisors build businesses with a focus on fee-based income streams. Independent insurance companies are evolving as well with a sophisticated and wide array of recurring revenue.

Along the way, these practices have become not just more valuable, they are also physically larger and stronger. This requires more qualified people to analyze, give advice, produce revenue, as well as the adjunct talent to support these professionals. Looking forward, we see an ever increasing need to recruit and retain the best talent in the industry to support not just where your practice is today, but where that growing business will be ten years from now. Everyone has read about the need for recruiting; but the story has shifted in the past few years and will continue to do so going forward. Rather than simply hiring next gen talent as the need arises, this could well turn into a fierce competition to adequately reward and retain that talent as more and more advisory businesses reach the next level of success and draw upon a talent pool that has scarcity written all over it. 

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Topics: Building Your Team, Business Growth, Enterprise Strength, Equity Pathways, Next Generation

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