Strategy

Focus Financial Makes Stock Market Debut

Tom Burroughes, Group Editor, July 30, 2018

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A firm founded 12 years ago and aggregating wealth management firms has gone public on the Nasdaq.

A prominent wealth management aggregator which operates on both sides of the Atlantic, Focus Financial is now a listed business although its IPO last week did not appear to blow out the lights.

As reports noted, Focus raised $535 million after the stock market closed on Wednesday last week, selling 16.2 million shares at $33 each. That values the company at $2 billion. One report (InvestmentNews, July 26) quoted Focus senior figures saying they hoped to raise $600 million or more, valuing the company at more than $2.4 billion. 

On Friday executives from Focus visited the Nasdaq Market Site in Times Square to celebrate going public. The firm was founded in 2006, and now comprises over 2,800 wealth management-focused principals and employees across the US, UK, Canada and Australia.

“This is not just a great step for Focus, but this is truly a major event for the RIA industry. Our success is a reflection of the unstoppable trend towards higher quality advice, only provided by fiduciary advisors,” chief executive, founder and chairman Rudy Adolf, said.

The IPO is an example of how the wealth management industry is shifting. A decade on from the 2008 financial crisis and beset by a barrage of new regulations, technological shifts and wealth transfer pressures, wealth firms are partnering with others, entering networks and merging to capture efficiencies and economies of scale. An issue for firms to balance is retaining independence against scale and efficiency.

This publication recently interviewed Dynasty Financial Partners about how the industry’s need for capital is changing business models.

 

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