$1.2B Acquisition of Dallas-Based Avantax Closed by Cetera

Via the all-cash, take-private deal, Avantax has become a standalone business unit within the San Diego-based Cetera family, with 3,111 financial professionals representing $82.3 billion in assets under administration and $42 billion in assets under management.

San Diego’s Cetera Financial Group has successfully acquired Dallas-based Avantax Inc. in a $1.2 billion all-cash, take-private deal announced in September.

Avantax CEO Chris Walters

Via the deal, Avantax—which had been publicly listed on Nasdaq—has become a standalone business unit within the Cetera family of companies, with 3,111 financial professionals representing $82.3 billion in assets under administration and $42 billion in assets under management, as of Sept. 30, the companies said.

Avantax CEO Chris Walters said the deal positions his company well for the future.

“I’d like to share my sincere gratitude to our board of directors, our leadership team, and the entire Avantax community for making Avantax the strong company it is today,” Walters said in a statement. “We believe the partnership with Cetera will expand Avantax’s unique tax-intelligent offering and position our financial professionals and affiliates for continued growth and success.”

Cetera, an independent wealth hub and financial services provider, said it is retaining Avantax’s legal entities, brand, core technology, product offerings, and existing clearing and custody relationships.

“This transaction represents the beginning of a promising new chapter together for two industry-leading firms, and we’re pleased to welcome the Avantax team to Cetera,” Cetera Holdings CEO Mike Durbin said in a statement. “Partnering with Avantax is core to our growth strategy and capitalizes on Avantax’s many capabilities that benefit financial professionals, affiliates and their clients.

“The Avantax Community immediately builds upon Cetera’s tax and wealth management capabilities and expertise, complementing our established tax-centric Cetera Financial Specialist team, and provides financial professionals another avenue for affiliation with Cetera,” Durbin added. “In addition, this acquisition establishes a strategic relationship between Cetera and Fidelity, as Cetera expands further into a multi-custodial platform, enhancing our capabilities to deliver the latest tools and resources to affiliated advisors.”

The addition of Avantax Planning Partners, an employee-based RIA with more than $7.8 billion in assets under management as of Sept. 30, strengthens Cetera’s established succession solution and delivers a powerful combined offering for Cetera’s adviser communities, Cetera said.

“We’ll continue to prioritize a thoughtful and collaborative approach to integration efforts to ensure a smooth onboarding process for Avantax,” Durbin said. “We;re confident Avantax financial professionals, affiliates and staff will thrive at Cetera, and we look forward to serving clients together for years to come.”

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