Dynasty Helps Investment Advisers Escape Brokers

What do you do if you are an adviser at a large brokerage firm and want to strike out on your own as an independent? You probably would want to speak with Shirl Penney, the founder and chief executive officer of Dynasty Financial Partners and this week’s guest on the Masters in Business podcast. Dynasty has assisted 250 advisers in 50 advisory offices managing more than $60 billion in assets on how to become independent via the Dynasty platform.

Penney tells of his humble roots, being raised by his step-grandfather in a fishing village in Maine. After college, he interviewed at Smith Barney and experienced a series of firsts: His first escalator, first revolving door and first airplane flight. Penney, who stayed at Smith Barney for more than a decade, was named to the Investment News “40 under 40” list in 2015.

Penney explains the four businesses Dynasty runs, the largest of which is being the back office for registered investment advisers. The firm handles everything from payroll to compliance, and from marketing to investing for these firms. This allows the advisers to focus on selling their services while letting Dynasty handle the administrative functions. Dynasty has become the leading platform provider for so-called breakaway brokers. He likens what the firm does to “the Staples easy button.” Penney describes Dynasty’s biggest competitor as “inertia and complacency.”

A list of his favorite books is here; A transcript of our conversation is available here.

You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras on iTunesSpotifyStitcherGoogleBloomberg, and Acast. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business next week with John Schlifske, the CEO of Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. The firm underwrites more than $2 trillion in life insurance, and has about $300 billion in client assets. Schlifske joined Northwestern Mutual in 1987 as an investment specialist, and climbed through the ranks to become CEO 11 years ago. The firm just announced a record $6.2 billion dividend.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.

Barry Ritholtz is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist. He is chairman and chief investment officer of Ritholtz Wealth Management, and was previously chief market strategist at Maxim Group. He is the author of “Bailout Nation.”

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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