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60 Seconds: Shirl Penney

60 Seconds: Shirl Penney

CEO, Dynasty Financial Partners, New York City

Registered Rep.: Dynasty is an integrated wealth management platform service provider that just marked its first birthday. Who invested?

Shirl Penney: It came from every partner, everyone from the administrators to the board of directors. Everyone's an equity owner; it was important to us to be built to last and not to be built to flip by having large sums of private equity capital. It took two years to build the platform before we could go out and tell some of the large advisors that this platform is ready, bring your clients over.

RR: Where are you now?

SP: We have announced eight firms in the network; north of $10 billion of assets on our platform. The goal for us is to have about 100 (firms) over the next five years that will have an aggregate well north of $100 billion in assets under management.

RR: What will you be able to do?

SP: I think it will continue to improve the economics for advisors. The more volume that you're driving with key resource partners, the more flexibility you have in pricing. Our platform evolves daily. As our advisors need new tools to run their business, we develop those. We wake up every day and think about platform, how do we develop a better platform. That will be an evolutionary process forever.

RR: Are you aiming to compete with wirehouses?

SP: No, I think there are a lot of advisors that like that captive environment, and they're never going to leave. But I do believe that if you could hit the reset button on our industry, it would look a lot more like the independent RIA model. I think fiduciary standards, independence, objectivity are where the model would be if there weren't so many legacy issues in the industry where advisors are just accustomed to working in a distribution environment. I had several national sales jobs in a previous life, so nobody poured or drank more Kool-Aid than I did about what we could do in a big firm that an independent firm couldn't, until I went on a one-year listening tour to understand what was available. What I found out definitively is the technology is a lot better in the independent space. There continues to be a further gap that emerges between what advice is given to a client from where products are manufactured and sold. We're on the cutting edge of helping to drive that paradigm shift.

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