RIA Summary: Carson Group to Acquire Baton Rouge RIA for $500M -Dlight News


In a slower week for deals among RIAs, Carson Group made its first full acquisition of the year and Buckingham Strategic Wealth announced its third.

In previous news, a young prodigy broke away from Merrill Lynch to start his own company.

Carson Wealth Adds $500M Baton Rouge RIA: The Shobe Financial Group

The Carson Group announced on Thursday that it has acquired The Shobe Financial Group, a $500 million investment advisory firm based in Baton Rouge, La.

The deal marks the seventh full acquisition by Carson Wealth, one of three subsidiaries of the Carson Group, in its history. It is also among the largest.

Led by Founder and Chairman Ed Shobe and President Jason Windham, both partners of the firm, the entire team of 16 will join Carson and continue to operate under the Shobe name – under the Carson Wealth brand.

Shobe cited the need for succession planning as a key reason for the move, coupled with a desire to enable growth.

“We see Carson Group as a long-term partner that will enable us to grow and serve our customers for generations,” he said in a statement. “This alignment strengthens our offering and is an important step in our 100-year plan.”

“We prefer to call them mergers if the team stays intact,” said Jamie Hopkins, managing partner of wealth solutions at Carson Wealth. “Shobe has seven CFPs which we are prioritizing and is doing a really great job on financial planning. There are things they do really well and we’re just merging with Carson Wealth while allowing them to continue to operate their way — although we haven’t pushed things that way in the past.”

Carson offers technology, investment, and financial planning “stacks,” he said, but has relaxed requirements that acquired and partner firms fully embrace them.

“We have some permitted technologies that aren’t part of the tech stack that companies have and can leverage,” Hopkins said. “We’re really trying to be more flexible and to meet consultants and companies where they are compared to what we offer as it was before.”

“We didn’t take this decision lightly – it took more than a year,” Windham said. “As a branch of Carson Wealth, we have access to expanded resources and can focus on what we do best.”

The Baton Rouge office is Carson Wealth’s seventh wholly owned office in the United States.

Based in Omaha, Neb., The Carson Group was founded by Ron Carson in 1983 and serves financial advisers and investors through its three businesses – Carson Wealth, its personal wealth management arm; Carson Partners, a RIA partnership platform; and Carson Coaching, a consultant coaching service. The Carson Group currently has $21 billion in assets under management in all three and serves more than 45,000 families through a network of more than 460 advisors in 37 states.

Buckingham Strategic Wealth announces third acquisition of 2023

Focus Financial Partners announced Friday that it has reached an agreement to join Hausman Advisors, a registered investment adviser based in Hood River, Oregon, with Focus partner firm Buckingham Strategic Wealth.

Founded in 2008 by Jason Smith and Karen Hausman Smith, Hausman primarily serves clients in engineering and scientific fields. The firm has been associated with Buckingham since 2012 through its partnership with Buckingham Strategic Partners, Buckingham’s affiliated turnkey wealth management platform.

“Karen and I spent our early careers in the academic field,” Smith said in a statement. “We firmly believe this background enables us to offer our clients differentiated perspectives and tailor the life and financial planning we undertake to their individual circumstances. We share Buckingham’s evidence-based investment philosophy and unwavering commitment to customer service. So we knew they would be an ideal fit for our company.”

“We have had the pleasure of working with the Hausman team over the past decade and have a very close relationship with them,” said Adam Birenbaum, CEO of Buckingham. For all these reasons, we couldn’t be more excited to add her to our consulting team. Their background brings a unique element to their ability to serve their customers, and we look forward to helping them expand their presence in Northern Oregon.”

Established in 1994, Buckingham Strategic Wealth currently manages more than $20 billion in assets across more than 40,000 client accounts, according to its latest form ADV. Based in St. Louis, Mo., the company has 50 offices nationwide.

The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2023, subject to customary closing conditions.

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