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RIA Roundup: Savvy Scores Boston Advisor Managing $1B+ at Schwab

Savvy snaps up Schwab advisor, LaSalle St. adds former Atria OSJ, Perigon Wealth buys Vegas shop and other news from Modern Wealth, Freestone Capital and Thurston Springer.

Savvy Advisors announced this week the firm has added the largest recruit in its history, while LaSalle St. poached an OSJ/RIA/broker/dealer from Atria’s Western International Securities and Perigon Wealth bought a practice in the greater Las Vegas area.

In talent grabs, Modern Wealth Management named a new legal and compliance czar, Freestone Capital Management created a new financial planning role for lawyer Lizzie Hollis and long-time Wells Fargo executive John Peluso joined Thurston Springer as EVP and partner at the firm to support inorganic growth and marketing initiatives.

In earlier reported news, Snowden Lane scored recruits from within the independent channel and Integrated facilitated the launch of a new CPA-focused wealth management firm on its platform, while Nepsis stepped onto the scene with its first acquisition of an accounting firm. Creative Planning also added a Delaware firm with $535 million in managed assets and Commonwealth welcomed a $3 billion San Diego team from Lincoln Investment.

Savvy Scores Boston Advisor Managing $1B+ at Schwab

Savvy Advisors, an RIA affiliated with Savvy Wealth, welcomed its 13th advisor with the addition of John Khoury from Charles Schwab, where he spent the last 15 years and oversaw more than $1 billion in client assets.

Based in the greater Boston area, Khoury joined Savvy as a principal wealth manager to take advantage of the firm’s tech-forward platform and marketing support. He is the largest recruit in the firm’s history.

“Savvy Wealth’s digital platform is efficient, scalable, and allows me to concentrate more on client relationships,” he said in a statement. “Unlike other solutions, which often seem outdated, Savvy's technology simplifies processes and enhances service quality. This enables me not only to maintain high standards for my current clients but also to expand my practice effectively, leveraging their comprehensive in-house tools for marketing and client acquisition.”

Specialized in portfolio analysis and retirement planning, Khoury had a client roster of about 350 wealthy households and institutions—including $325 million in advisory AUM—as a vice president and senior financial consultant at Schwab. Prior to that position, he spent more than seven years at Fidelity Investments in retirement and financial consultant roles.

Savvy Wealth was incorporated in July 2021 and raised venture capital funds before officially launching its affiliated RIA the following summer with the intention of creating an “all-in-one,” technology-powered wealth management platform. By the end of the year, the firm had attracted half a dozen advisors and more than $100 million in assets. After pausing in early 2023 to assess progress and roll out a new direct indexing tool and AI-powered platform called Co-Pilot, Savvy has now added seven advisors in recent months.

LaSalle St. Recruits Western International OSJ from Atria

LaSalle St., a Chicago-based firm comprising an independent broker/dealer and two registered investment advisory platforms, recruited Horwitz & Associates to join its network from Atria’s Western International Securities, where the firm operated as an office of supervisory jurisdiction with more than $550 million in client assets.

Founded in 1970 by Gerald Horwitz, the 13-member multi-generational Horwitz & Associates team will continue to own and operate the OSJ and wealth management business under current branding from a home base in Deerfield, Ill., and offices in Arizona, Florida, Louisiana and Ohio. 

Privately owned since its founding in 1974, LaSalle St. sold a “meaningful amount” of its stock to affiliated advisors early this year under a new equity ownership program, and expects to make more available in future rounds.

Offering brokerage, advisory, investment and insurance services, LaSalle St. supports some 300 financial advisors overseeing around $12 billion in client assets, about a third of whom are registered investment advisors managing in excess of $3 billion.

Perigon Wealth Management Buys Wealth Advisors Inc. in Nevada

Bay Area-based Perigon Wealth Management acquired a suburban Las Vegas RIA with more than $275 million in managed assets and an additional office in San Diego County, Calif., establishing its first location in the Silver State and further expanding its West Coast footprint.

Wealth Advisors founder and President Paul Drolson will become a partner at Perigon. He is joined in the move by a team of four advisors and support staff.

He created Wealth Advisors in 2003 to provide tax and retirement planning alongside wealth and asset management for high-net-worth individuals, families and small businesses. He previously spent two decades with American Express Financial Advisors (now Ameriprise), most recently as a divisional vice president, and did a stint as an IAR and registered rep under First Allied Securities.

Founded in 2004 and 100% partner-owned, Perigon followed an organic growth trajectory until it began to recruit independent advisors as tuck-ins to its platform in 2017. Three years later, the firm began pursuing a mergers and acquisitions strategy in addition to continued recruitment efforts, adding teams and offices across six major markets, including New England and the San Francisco Bay Area, since late 2021 and more than doubling assets from around $2.4 billion to $5.6 billion on a mission to establish itself as a national brand.

Last fall, Perigon announced a merger with PM Wealth Management, formed a strategic alliance with Prager Metis tax advisory firm, acquired Nauset Wealth Management and expanded its Atlanta office. And, in 2023, the firm has added Stakeholders Capital and Cognizant Wealth and brought in a new CIO.

Modern Wealth Management Names J.P. Rankin Chief Compliance and Legal Officer

Modern Wealth Management, an RIA founded earlier this year by former United Capital and Goldman Sachs executives with $200 million in private equity funding, named J.P. Rankin as the firm’s new head of legal and compliance.

Rankin joins Modern Wealth from CreativeOne Wealth, a Kansas City-based hybrid firm managing about $2.9 billion under its RIA. While at CreativeOne, Rankin earned his Master of Laws degree in wealth management from the Texas A&M University School of Law. Previously, he held various legal and compliance roles at Advisors Excel, the Office of the Kansas Securities Commissioner and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

Working from Modern Wealth’s primary location in Lenexa, Kan., Rankin will manage compliance strategy and provide legal counsel to the firm’s leadership team.

Modern Wealth has completed five acquisitions as it works to build out a national, full-service brand through M&A. With corporate management based in California, the first three acquisitions came just weeks after its launch in early April, establishing its headquarters and two additional locations in the greater Kansas City area, where the firm has built a lead-generating “growth hub,” as well as two offices in the Detroit region.

The fourth, announced in early September, added a team of five and an office in Iowa. Most recently, the acquisition of Martin James in Indianapolis bolstered tax capabilities.

Modern Wealth currently has about 58 employees, including 19 financial advisors, managing more than $1.5 billion across 7,700 accounts and 2,266 households, according to recent federal filings.

Freestone Capital Management Hires Lizzie Hollis to Lead Wealth Strategy and Estate Planning

Attorney Lizzie Hollis joined Freestone Capital Management as managing director of wealth strategy and estate planning, becoming the fourth member of the firm’s in-house financial planning team.

Working in Freestone’s San Francisco office, Hollis will report to Managing Director and Head of Financial Planning Christine Opp. In the newly created role, she will expand capabilities in support of the firm’s 26 advisors and its “strategic vision,” according to an announcement.

With more than a decade of experience in trust and estate planning, Hollis previously practiced at the law firm of Delagnes, Linder & Duey, where she advised wealthy clients on all phases of estate planning, including trust administration, gift and generation-skipping tax planning and charitable planned giving.

Founded in 1999, Freestone is an employee-owned, fee-only serving nearly 2,400 wealthy individuals and households, 68 businesses, 18 funds and 11 charities with more than $8 billion in managed assets, according to recent federal filings.

Based in Seattle, the firm has additional offices along the West Coast, in Silicon Valley, Santa Barbara, San Francisco and Anchorage.

John Peluso Joins Thurston Springer as EVP and Partner

Indianapolis-based Thurston Springer, a hybrid RIA and broker/dealer platform, recruited John Peluso to serve as executive vice president and partner.

Most recently a senior managing director with Wells Fargo, where he led two divisions of the firm’s independent advisor business during a 35-year tenure, Peluso has also chaired the SIFMA Independent Firms Committee and served as a board member of the Wealth Advisory Institute.

He will focus on strategies to support the firm’s brand and market awareness, advisor experience and continued growth through recruiting, RIA M&A and minority investment activity, according to an announcement.

Founded in 1981, Thurston Springer provides brokerage services, tax and business consulting and insurance products through its various affiliated businesses. With close to 30 affiliated firms under its RIA, Thurston Springer Advisors, the firm currently manages about $1.35 billion in registered assets for fewer than 2,000 individuals and families.

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