Hightower Takes Stake in $830 Million New York RIA
Chicago-based RIA acquirer Hightower has purchased a stake in Siller & Cohen Family Wealth Advisors, a Rye Brook, N.Y. registered investment advisor managing $830 million in assets, according to a Tuesday announcement.
Hightower earlier this month acquired Los Angeles-based RIA Bel Air Investment Advisors, with $8 billion in assets under management, from Fiera Capital Corporation, a Montreal-based publicly traded asset manager. It was Hightower’s largest acquisition by asset size.
Siller & Cohen, founded in 1988 by Randy Siller and Jeffrey Cohen, provides multi-generational estate planning, active tax management, risk management, business exit and succession planning, comprehensive financial planning, and divorce planning. The firm, which had been an affiliate of independent broker-dealer Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp., has 11 employees, including 5 advisors, according to the announcement and registration records.
Siller said in the release that they considered nine prospective buyers but were drawn to Hightower by its offer of additional support for operations, investment management, marketing and business development, according to the announcement.
“We are looking forward to leveraging Hightower’s integrated technology for opening accounts, managing portfolios, viewing held-away assets and providing clients with access to their full financial picture via the mobile client portal,” Siller said.
Hightower, which has 115 advisory businesses and $79.6 billion in client assets, has been an aggressive acquirer of RIA businesses since it shifted its focus from its founding strategy of recruiting wirehouse brokers in 2017. The firm, led by Chief Executive Bob Oros, added closed deals for nine practices last year.
Private equity firm Thomas H. Lee Partners took a majority stake in Hightower in 2018, and in December of 2020, Hightower announced an additional cash infusion with investments from funds advised by Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Neuberger Berman and Coller Capital.
Hightower’s announcement comes as dealmaking in the RIA space hit a record in 2020, and the pace of consolidation appears to be extending into the new year.
MAI Capital Deal
Also on Tuesday, MAI Capital Management, a Cleveland-based RIA, said that it will acquire HW Financial Advisors. HWFA, which was founded in 1999 and manages $700 million in assets, is a Beachwood, Ohio-based RIA affiliate of accounting firm HW&Co.
The companies did not disclose financial terms of the deal, which is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021. The transaction marks MAI’s 10th acquisition since taking a minority investment in July of 2017 from Wealth Partners Capital Group, an RIA roll-up backed by Affiliated Managers Group, Inc.
HWFA’s president Stephen Rudolph, who was an MAI employee earlier in his career, will be managing director at MAI, according to the announcement.
“We are excited to welcome him back to MAI and work together to enhance our presence within Cleveland and beyond,” Rick Buoncore, managing partner at MAI, said in a prepared statement.
HW&Co. will maintain a stake in HWFA after the MAI deal closes, according to the announcement.
MAI has about $9.1 billion in total assets under management.