Focus Completes Four Mergers for Partner Firms
New York, NY – October 20, 2015 – Focus Financial Partners, LLC (‘Focus’), a leading partnership of independent, fiduciary wealth management firms, today announced the closing of four merger deals for three of its partner firms — Buckingham Asset Management, JFS Wealth Advisors and Summit Financial Wealth Advisors. These mergers will help the firms to significantly expand their geographic presence and strengthen their client service capabilities.
“We are excited to provide capital and strategic expertise to the continued growth of our partners, who, as high-performing, entrepreneurial fiduciaries, continue to attract elite, culturally-aligned individuals and teams amid heightened M&A activity in the industry,” said Rudy Adolf, Founder and CEO of Focus.
Focus partner firms closed the following strategic transactions on October 1, 2015:
- Buckingham Asset Management, St. Louis, Missouri: Buckingham Asset Management (‘Buckingham’) completed two mergers with advisors Connie Brezik and Fred Zerke. Ms. Brezik, based in Casper, Wyoming will allow Buckingham to expand its client base in the northwestern United States. Ms. Brezik’s existing clients will also benefit from Buckingham’s broader service offerings.
The merger with Zerke Advisors, Inc., a sole practitioner RIA based in Houston, Texas marks the completion of Fred Zerke’s succession plan, where his existing clients will be served by Buckingham’s Texas offices going forward. This is Buckingham’s second merger in 2015 that originated with a Focus Successions® agreement, the previous one being Classic Capital, an RIA based in Short Hills, New Jersey that merged with Buckingham in April.
- JFS Wealth Advisors, Hermitage, Pennsylvania: Comprehensive Investment Solutions, LLC (‘CIS’), an RIA based in Yardley, Pennsylvania merged with JFS Wealth Advisors (‘JFS’). All employees of CIS will join JFS. Tom Alvare, former CEO of CIS, will join JFS as a managing principal. Mr. Alvare and Bob Jazwinski, the founder of JFS, who have a shared background in the accounting field, have maintained a close professional relationship for the last 20 years and decided to combine their firms to realize the inherent synergies. This merger will expand JFS’ geographic presence in Pennsylvania, bringing the number of its offices in the state to five. The merger will also fortify JFS’ ability to serve high net worth individuals in the greater Philadelphia region, further supporting the growth of the firm. This deal is a strong continuation of the firm’s growth following the addition of Thomas Paulus to JFS in July 2015.
- Summit Financial, Lafayette, Louisiana: FPL Asset Management (‘FPL’), a Monroe, Louisiana-based RIA, has merged with Summit Financial Wealth Advisors (‘Summit’), making Summit one of the largest RIAs in the state and expanding its presence to the northern region. FPL founders Kenneth Vines and Louis Ray join Summit as partners and FPL’s four employees also join Summit as full-time staff. The deal will also provide complementary service enhancement on both sides, granting FPL clients additional services such as insurance and muni-bond management services while making institutional consulting services available to Summit clients.
About Focus Financial Partners, LLC
Focus Financial Partners is a leading partnership of independent, fiduciary wealth management firms. Focus provides unrivaled access to best practices, resources, and continuity planning for its partner firms who serve individuals, families, employers and institutions with wealth management, benefit and investment consulting services. Focus partner firms maintain their operational independence, while they benefit from the synergies, scale, economics and best practices of the market leader to achieve their business objectives. For more information about Focus Financial Partners, please visit www.focusfinancialpartners.com.
Focus Financial Partners
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