More RIA Consolidation Ahead

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A two-day M&A conference held by Gladstone Associates during the first week of May highlighted the growing influence of private equity investors in the RIA business.

The boutique M&A advisory firm, based in Plymouth Meeting, PA, hosted the event in Atlantic City. Approximately 100 RIA principals from around the country were present, representing approximately $320 billion in assets under management. Participants were looking to grow their business through acquisitions and assessing the market regarding the sale of their own firms.

Based on surveys conducted at the conference, just under half, or 45%, of the principals reported they anticipated completing two or more transactions in the coming 12 months.


Buyers and sellers noted the increasingly prominent role private equity capital continues to play in the RIA M&A landscape, which creates advantages and challenges depending on where you sit at the table. According to Daniel Kreuter, chief executive officer of the Gladstone Group, “Private equity investors have definitely raised the table stakes around the pricing for RIAs, which is great news if you own or are building an RIA business.”