Registered Rep: United Capital is a holding company that buys registered investment advisors (RIAs) all over the country. Describe your firm.
Joseph Duran: We are a national wealth-management firm that owns signature financial practices around the country. We create operating efficiencies and enhanced client services for every regional practice we partner with. So far we have purchased 15 regional firms, and we currently oversee about $8 billion in client assets.
RR: What kinds of firms are you looking for? Are they dually registered?
JD: Firms should have at least $100 million in client assets, and $1 million in annual revenue. We have partnered with independent RIAs and commission-based independent firms. Recently we have even partnered with top wirehouse advisors.
RR: Describe recent deals and valuations.
JD: Each firm is unique, and so are the pricing and terms for each transaction. We pay a mix of cash, notes and stock.
RR: What does the new partner firm get out of the deal?
JD: Besides the financial benefits of the transaction, advisors love having partners take on the administrative and operational minutiae — including technology, compliance and client reporting, among others.
RR: How do you think you are different from other holding firms, such as Focus Financial, National Financial Partners, Wealth Trust and etc.?
JD: We think we help the advisors grow. We think no other acquirer has such a profound impact on the firms it purchases.
RR: What's your favorite business book?
JD: The Power of Full Engagement. I really believe balancing your time is the key to success.