Savant Wealth Management is acquiring Raymond F. Book & Associates and its affiliated fee-only RIA.
After the acquisition, Savant, a fee-only firm with about $20.3 billion in assets under management and advisement, will have an accounting and tax team of almost 100 professionals (Raymond F. Book’s RIA has about $376 million in managed assets).
According to Savant CEO Brent Brodeski, the Dover, Del.-based Raymond F. Book was Savant’s third acquisition of businesses combining RIA and CPA services, as well as the fourth accounting firm. Brodeski stressed Savant was unique in its desire to partner “with more than just the wealth side of the business.”
“Our partnership with these two sister firms further solidifies Savant’s commitment to being the leading integrated wealth management, tax and accounting firm,” he said.
The acquisition comes about a year after Savant took its first steps forward on a five-year "growth plan," with the firm aiming to grow fivefold over that time. With Savant buoyed by a minority investment from Kelso & Company, Brodeski said four to six deals “per year” was the firm’s expected sweet spot.
In February, Savant lured Patrick Lawlor from his role as president and head of M&A at the Mather Group to become Savant’s new M&A leader. At the time, Brodeski said the firm had spent 2021 accruing capital to accelerate growth, while 2022 was focused on bolstering its “advisory leadership.”
“Now, we’re ramping up our growth engine by significantly expanding our M&A team, accelerating the size and volume of our M&A activity, and developing cutting-edge technology that will differentiate our client experience and help generate organic growth,’ he said.
The dual acquisitions of Raymond F. Book’s tax and RIA businesses are Savant’s sixth and seventh deals this year. Since the start of 2023, the firm has opened offices in Georgia, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and South Carolina, with 35 total locations throughout 13 states.
In all, 26 employees will join Savant via the acquisition, with seven employees becoming “member-owners,” boosting the total number of employee-owners at Savant to 136 among 439 total workers.
Raymond F. Book offers tax and accounting services, advising business startups and managers, as well as estate and trust services. The firm founded its affiliated RIA in 2001. Raymond F. Book Managing Partner Ronald Vascik said the businesses were attracted to Savant because it was interested in both its tax and advisory services.
“Savant understands the importance of integrating tax, financial and investment services to provide a holistic experience to clients,” he said.