Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Sawtooth, which will adopt the Simplicity brand, will continue to serve all its existing clients and a new base of advisers in the Simplicity distribution network, according to the announcement.
The acquisition was announced more than a year after the TAMP brought on Echelon Partners as its investment banker in August 2020 to land the dedicated capital it felt necessary to stay competitive. Echelon Partners, a Los Angeles-based investment bank, management consultant and valuation firm focused on the wealth and investment management industries, served as the exclusive sell-side adviser to Sawtooth Solutions in the Simplicity transaction.
“Simplicity’s resources are extensive and through disruptive innovation, we will advance the capability of our advisers to help them meet the ever-increasing demands of their clientele,” said Brad Pries, CEO of Sawtooth in a statement. “With access to Simplicity’s expertise, capital, and talent, we can execute on best ideas to drive growth for the combined firms.”
Minneapolis-based Sawtooth Solutions, which manages $17.5 billion in assets, provides unified managed account investment solutions to independent wealth advisers.
Current market trends as well as the volatility sparked by Covid-19 have fueled consolidation among TAMPs, and companies are forging new tactics to grab a larger slice of the pie.
The dominant players, like TAMP powerhouse Envestnet, have found scale in mergers. Another top TAMP, AssetMark, realized growth recently through an initial public offering. Smaller firms have been absorbed into larger companies, like Orion Advisor Solutions’ purchase of Brinker Capital last year or Vestmark’s deal with Adhesion in 2018.
Mergers have opened up potential opportunities for the combined companies to attain the scale necessary to join the ranks of TAMP powerhouses like Envestnet, SEI and AssetMark in terms of assets.
Andrew is half-human, half-gamer. He’s also a science fiction author writing for BleeBot.