Atria Advisors Need To Control The Conversation In Acquisition

If you’re an advisor under the Atria umbrella (Cadaret Grant, CUSO, Grove Point et al) you’ve probably had a few restless nights since it was announced that LPL would be acquiring Atria.  It makes sense.  One day you are just humming along, handling business the way you want with a growing BD that is seemingly firing on all cylinders and then next second it’s announced they’re being acquired.  So, what should you do?

You should grab control of the conversation and get offers from other BDs right now.


Well for one, what’s being offered to advisors might not be the best deal they can get.  It may be a perceived “path of least resistance,” but it could also turn out to be significantly less money than what you could get in the “free agent” market. (Editors note: LPLs packages have been strong over the past few months, but have not generally been the highest available)

Since the news of the acquisition by LPL we’ve heard from a significant number of impacted advisors and here’s what we are seeing – offers are all over the map (some are low, many simply mediocre), general confusion over deadlines, pressure to say “yes” right away, and no compelling personalized value prop.

I want to pause for a second and acknowledge a potential elephant in the room.  We’ve written many stories recently on how LPL is crushing it in the recruiting space and how advisors need to have them on their radar to consider, we still believe that – LPL can be a great fit,  but that brings us to the second reason why advisors need to grab the reigns here…

“Decision Is The Ultimate Power.” – Tony Robbins

If you are an Atria advisor who felt LPL was the right place for you, you probably should have gotten a transition package and moved there prior to the acquisition – I know, your crystal ball has been in the shop.  That package might have come with a more personalized transition experience as opposed to the scaled-up approach that will probably play out with an acquisition.  Though Atria advisors will likely be well taken care of, the financials and focus are set to benefit the corporate entities involved.  A more traditional transition process would place greater emphasis on you – the advisor. 

We advocate every day for advisors to consider LPL and we will continue to do so, but our process is centered on finding the best fit for each individual advisor, and that includes what is the best financial decision for that specific advisor. There is no one-size-fits-all solution, and you shouldn’t cost yourself money just because you don’t want to ruffle a few feathers.

If you are an Atria advisor, consider the benefits of asserting your right to determine your own career path.  Once you have a few offers in hand you can compare them to LPL and make the best decision possible for you – not just the corporate entities involved in the acquisition.

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