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TD Ameritrade Institutional Draws Record Number of Breakaway Brokers

TD Ameritrade Institutional1 attracted a record 441 breakaway brokers to its platform for independent registered investment advisors (“RIAs”) in fiscal 2012, a 27 percent increase from fiscal 2011. TD Ameritrade Institutional has established itself as a leader in supporting breakaway brokers and has helped more than 1,000 advisors become RIAs since 2010, more than any other custodian.2

“TD Ameritrade Institutional is one of the most experienced custodians in helping advisors make the move to independence,” said Tom Nally, president, TD Ameritrade Institutional. “We’ve made the goal of becoming an RIA more attainable through a clear, step-by-step, guided approach that can help take the guesswork out of the process.”

TD Ameritrade Institutional’s Bridge to Independence program serves to simplify and ease the transition for financial advisors looking to start their own RIA firm, join an established RIA or operate as a hybrid advisor. TD Ameritrade’s one-on-one approach is tailored to the financial advisor’s goals to help make the transition as straightforward as possible. TD Ameritrade Institutional provides guidance through four phases:

1) Choose a path. Financial advisors have options to consider when choosing how they will set up their business. TD Ameritrade Institutional lays out options for advisors starting a new RIA firm or joining an established RIA firm and also helps hybrid advisors find the right broker-dealer to support or transition any commission business. Financial advisors can get insights on the potential financial advantages of going independent, creating a strong business plan and timing a transition.

2) Plan – Business structure and setup. TD Ameritrade Institutional provides financial advisors with expertise and support for a wide range of business needs including staffing, setting up technology and investment platforms, compliance and insurance, even office furniture and phone systems.

3) Transition. TD Ameritrade Institutional’s experienced Business Transition Services team has transitioned thousands of advisors. The team handles all account and asset transfers, client communications, and other logistics and helps ensure that the account transfer process goes according to plan.

4) Grow Manage the business for success. TD Ameritrade Institutional provides ongoing practice management services which include access to educational materials and expertise in the areas of technology, staffing and compensation, client service, operations, business management and strategic planning.

“There’s more support than ever before for breakaway brokers who want to experience the benefits of the independent advice model. They no longer have to deal with conflicts regarding what is good for the employer, as opposed to what is good for their clients,” said Nally. “We’ve dispelled the myth that going independent means going it alone. The RIA industry has matured and there are more choices and flexibility available to RIAs as an increasing number of technology and service providers focus their attention on the growing independent advice channel.”

Scott Stauffer, a former wirehouse broker, recently made the decision to become an RIA. Stauffer chose to join California-based Wealth Design, LLC, an established RIA firm. He wanted the freedom to do what’s right for his clients, choice and flexibility in investment options and the potential financial benefit associated with becoming an independent advisor, but wasn’t interested in the operational side of running a practice.

"Joining an established firm that had been through the experience of transitioning to the RIA model, coupled with TD Ameritrade Institutional’s expertise, proved invaluable,” said Stauffer, Wealth Design, LLC. “Not only did TD Ameritrade Institutional provide a clear road map, but the transition team was a sounding board throughout the process. Any issues or questions were quickly addressed which eliminated concerns and gave me the confidence that my business and my clients were in good hands.”

TD Ameritrade Institutional’s Bridge to Independence support services include:

  • Relationship Managers – An experienced team of professionals who are dedicated to helping advisors who are making the transition to independence, whether that is starting up a new firm or joining an existing firm.
  • TD Ameritrade Institutional RIAConnect™3 – Advisors looking to join an existing RIA firm will be introduced to established RIA firms with proven capabilities to support their business objectives.
  • Business Evaluator4 – An online tool that allows advisors to compare business models, estimate expenses, identify their motivations and strengths, and ultimately design a customized action plan to ease the transition to independence.
  • Business Transition Service Team – Dedicated service group to help advisors develop a plan to transition their clients to their new firm and simplify the account transfer and paperwork requirements (minimum asset requirements apply).
  • Broker/Dealer Network – This flexible service helps ease the transition and maintenance of advisors’ commission-based business. TD Ameritrade Institutional works with broker-dealers who understand the unique needs of RIAs. Advisors have the choice to affiliate with a company that fits their specific culture, size, location and product needs.
  • Advisor Transition Mentor Council – A collection of experienced advisors who have successfully made the transition to independence and who can provide their insight, guidance and counsel to advisors considering making the decision to go independent.
  • Webcasts, Whitepapers and Case Studies5Provide guidance from advisors and industry experts on transitioning to the RIA model. †

Whitepaper: Understanding the Burdens of Going Independent
Webcast: Becoming an RIA: The "Aha Moment"
Webcast: A Pathway To True Independence: Joining an Established RIA
Webcast: Making Independence Happen: Join an Established RIA
Case Study: Independence from a wirehouse to an RIA

Visit www.exploringyourindependence.com to learn about starting or joining an independent RIA. For more information about transition support, visit www.tdainstitutional.com/commitment or call 800-934-6124.

About TD Ameritrade Institutional

TD Ameritrade Institutional1 is a leading provider of comprehensive brokerage and custody services to over 4,500 fee-based, independent registered investment advisors and their clients. Our advanced technology platform, coupled with personal support from our dedicated service teams, allows investment advisors to run their practices more efficiently and effectively while optimizing time with clients.

About TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation

Millions of investors and independent registered investment advisors (RIAs) have turned to TD Ameritrade’s (NYSE: AMTD) technology, people and education to help make investing and trading easier to understand and do. Online or over the phone. In a branch or with an independent RIA. First-timer or sophisticated trader. Our clients want to take control, and we help them decide how - bringing Wall Street to Main Street for more than 36 years. An official sponsor of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team, TD Ameritrade has time and again been recognized as a leader in investment services. Please visit TD Ameritrade’s newsroom or www.amtd.com for more information.

Brokerage services provided by TD Ameritrade, Inc., member FINRA (www.FINRA.org) /SIPC (www.SIPC.org) /NFA (www.nfa.futures.org)

1TD Ameritrade Institutional is a division of TD Ameritrade, Inc., a brokerage subsidiary of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation.

2Based on publicly available and anticipated reports for Fidelity Investments and Charles Schwab.

3Access to the TD Ameritrade Institutional RIAConnectTM program is provided by TD Ameritrade Institutional as a service to financial advisors using the brokerage, execution and custody services of TD Ameritrade Institutional. TD Ameritrade does not guarantee nor is it responsible for the completeness or accuracy of the data provided or for the quality of any product or service. TD Ameritrade makes no warranty or representation with respect to the service as to suitability or fitness for a particular purpose. In no instance should the listing of a third party be construed as a recommendation or endorsement by TD Ameritrade.

4The Business Evaluator tool provides an assessment and analysis regarding issues surrounding professional transition. It is intended to be a guideline and general analysis. Each business and situation is unique, and while the information provided aids in understanding the financial and business implications of a decision, the information should not be used in isolation. Certain information is provided by ActiFi, Inc., a company not affiliated with TD Ameritrade. Access to the Business Evaluator database is provided by TD Ameritrade Institutional as a service to prospective financial advisors not affiliated with TD Ameritrade Institutional.

5Webinars are provided for general information purposes only and should not be considered an individualized recommendation or advice. TD Ameritrade makes no representations or warranties with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the information provided.

Advisors have not received remuneration for participation in providing testimonials. Advisor testimonials may not represent the experience of all advisors using TD Ameritrade brokerage services. The advisors mentioned are independent and not affiliated with TD Ameritrade Institutional. More information about the advisors is available on the SEC website (www.sec.gov).

Wealth Design, LLC is separate from and not affiliated with TD Ameritrade.

† Please note that by clicking on the hyperlinks provided you will enter an unaffiliated third-party Web site to access its products and services. The third-party site is governed by its posted privacy policy and terms of use, and the third party is solely responsible for the content and offerings on its Web site.


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