Wellington-Altus has grown again — and this time added a new business line in the process.
On Tuesday, the Winnipeg-based independent advisory firm announced it had reached an agreement to acquire Calgary-based TriVest Wealth Counsel Ltd., a firm of portfolio managers (PMs) focused on high-net-worth families. The acquisition is expected to close in late 2019 or early 2020, pending regulatory approval.
With the purchase, Wellington-Altus launched its new Wellington-Altus Private Counsel Inc. subsidiary, which will focus on the Investment Counsel Portfolio Manager (ICPM) segment of the wealth management industry, complementing Wellington-Altus’ Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) business.
“While the regulatory regime in this business is different than what we see in our IIROC business, the needs of PMs — who are typically also the business owners — are the same,” Wellington-Altus president Shaun Hauser said in a statement. “PMs and investment advisors are moving more towards providing comprehensive wealth management advice.”
Martin Pelletier, co-founder and managing director of TriVest, will become managing director of Wellington-Altus’s Private Counsel business. In a statement, he said Wellington-Altus offered what TriVest was looking for.
“For us, it was about having a like-minded partner to help support our growth plans, while at the same time ultimately taking away some of the burdensome parts of running an ICPM business and allowing us to focus more time with our clients and prospects, resulting in growing our business at a healthier clip moving forward,” Pelletier said.
Wellington-Altus has also added a new custodial relationship with the acquisition. TriVest uses Fidelity Clearing Canada ULC as a third-party custodian of its clients’ assets, while Wellington-Altus uses National Bank Independent Network (NBIN).
“For now, we are taking an agnostic approach towards our back-office custodians in this business line,” Hauser said. “We have a great relationship with our partners at NBIN that we intend to grow, but at the same time, we are interested to understand what all the custodians are capable of.”
This marks the second time in less than a month that Wellington-Altus has announced the addition of a new team in Calgary. In late November, the firm welcomed Cresco Wealth Management, which added $800 million in assets under administration to Wellington-Altus.