Listen to this week’s episode.

Episode 016: The success of M&A in the wealth management industry depends on a combination of qualitative and quantitative factors. Firms that can differentiate themselves through a compelling client experience, deliberate growth strategies, and effective use of technology will be well-positioned for organic growth and increased enterprise value. 

In this episode of Connected, Kyle is joined by Matt Brinker, Managing Partner at Merchant Investment Management. An expert in M&A in the wealth management industry, Matt discusses the key variables that make a great firm. He emphasizes the importance of building a differentiated client experience and investing in organic growth. Matt also delves into the challenges of succession planning and attracting young talent in the industry. Finally, Matt shares insights on the emotional challenges that can arise during the transaction process and the need for clear expectations and integration plans.


Join us as we discuss:

[01:35] – The key variables that make a great firm.
[04:09] – The challenges of succession planning and attracting young talent in the industry.
[07:12] – What organic growth means for career development and the success of a firm.
[09:42] – Matt’s tips for growing a firm organically.
[13:29] – Creating a unique client experience.
[19:15] – What sets wealth management firms apart from their competitors?
[22:00] – What drove Matt to invest in building the FinLife platform?
[24:32] – Potential pitfalls to watch out for during the buying process.
[28:31] – How Merchant Investment Management operates.
[34:22] – The importance of investing in technology in wealth management.
[39:56] – Matt’s hobbies and interests outside of work.


Key Takeaways

The qualitative aspects of a wealth management firm, such as the client experience and infrastructure, are just as important as the quantitative aspects like financials and growth rates.
Building a destination firm for clients, with a consistent and differentiated client experience, is crucial for attracting and retaining talent.
Organic growth is not just about making more money but also about creating career growth opportunities within the firm.
Before investing in marketing and digital strategies, firms should ensure they have a strong and differentiated client experience worth promoting.
The wealth transfer between baby boomers and the next generation presents a significant organic growth opportunity for firms that can engage and serve the next generation effectively.



“What really informs the financials, client retention, and organic growth rates is the underlying infrastructure of the business. That means operating scale, effective use of technology, consistent client experience, systematic growth, and defined branding and strategy.” ~ Matt Brinker

“When it comes to organic growth, systems and processes, and onboarding the next generation of employees, there’s a certain ilk of firms that know how to do that and will continue to win when it comes to attracting, developing, and keeping talent.” ~ Matt Brinker

“You can’t have a personalized customer experience if you don’t have a personal relationship or personalized data on the client.” ~ Matt Brinker



Matt Brinker on LinkedIn
Matt Brinker on Twitter
Merchant Investment Management
FinLife Partnerships
Raymond James


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