Barry Glassman, a McLean, Va.-based advisor with $300 million in assets under management, has left Royal Alliance to become a registered investment advisor.
The principal of Glassman Wealth Services says he had harmonious relations with the big broker-dealer, but he felt he could bring a higher level of counsel to his 100 clients as an RIA than as a broker under the regulatory oversight of FINRA.
“There are restrictions as far as the kinds of things we can say and document if one has the ability to earn commissions,” he says.
Glassman, who was in the top 1% of brokers at the broker-dealer, got his start there 15 years ago. “My experience with Royal Alliance was incredibly positive,” he adds.
Glassman now keeps his firm’s assets with Schwab Advisor Services.
“Schwab was just the best fit,” he says. “While talking to Schwab, Fidelity and others, it was just clear Schwab had helped with high net worth advisors before. It was the things they had at their fingertips. They spoke my language from the first meeting.”
Glassman, who broke away in early September, has already transferred 99% of its assets under management. The move to fuller independence was made easier by the way he was operating a de facto “firm-within-a-firm” at Cassaday & Co., a firm affiliated with Royal Alliance.
Glassman’s goal with his new practice is to bring the kinds of wealth management services that people with hundreds of millions expect to clients with $2 million to $100 million. His firm only takes clients with $2 million or more of assets.
Glassman will outsource services related to investment research, manager due diligence, information management, and reporting to Fortigent LLC of Rockville, Md.
“Am I outsourcing?” he responds. “Kind of. I’m enhancing the in-house research I put together.”
Glassman has two CFPs who work on his staff. By year’s end he’s planning to hire two more professionals with strong tax backgrounds to help understand matters related to Roth IRA conversions, AMT optimization and other complexities.
In 2006, Glassman was recognized as an outstanding broker by Registered Rep magazine.