Larry Andreano is no stranger to change. The L.M. Kohn independent advisor has had an interesting and storied career, marked by many moves, upheavals and career changes before partnering with L.M. Kohn and finding the stability he needed to finally build the life he wanted for himself.
A turbulent beginning
Upon entering into the workforce, Larry’s career had several twists and turns before he became a financial advisor. After starting out as an air-traffic controller, although he loved the job and its challenges, he decided that he didn’t want to do it for the next 30 years. Having always been fascinated with how people could turn savings from their wages into an estate, Larry decided that a career in finance would suit him better. From there, he began a long journey of different roles for a number of organizations. After working in strategic planning, corporate finance and several roles in the insurance industry, Larry decided to directly pursue his childhood interests of personal finance and joined a large investment banking company as a financial advisor.
Making the leap to financial advising
By now, the year was 2006, and Larry’s timing couldn’t have been any worse. Two years later, when the financial crisis of 2008 forced the world into a recession, his employer decided to let go of every employee with less than four years of service to the company. Larry was one of about 4,000 employees to be laid off. This development was particularly painful for him, during a time when he was trying to build his book of business. But he picked himself up, quickly securing another position at a large investment banking firm before ending up with a smaller privately owned financial planning group, each time completing the mountains of paperwork to bring his accounts along with him. Having moved around so much, Larry felt that he had finally reached the point where he could begin putting down roots. He enjoyed his work, and by now had built an impressive book of business of many happy clients that gladly referred him to family and friends. He enjoyed being able to focus on building wealth and income flow for his clients. He also enjoyed working with the group’s custodial firm, RBC Capital Markets. So, it came as a disappointment to Larry when, after a little over five years with the group, its owners decided to sell the business and all the advisors with it. Faced with once again repapering all of his accounts, he was unhappy to hear the news. The purchasing firm met with Larry and the other advisors, promising them they wouldn’t again have to repaper all of their accounts. But knowing this to be untrue, as FINRA and the SEC have very specific exceptions and conditions detailing the requirements for repapering, as well as having the suspicion that the new firm’s focus was not necessarily on what was in the client’s best interest, Larry decided that it was time to strike out on his own.
Larry contacted RBC asking for a list of broker-dealers that use RBC as a custodian firm and was put in touch with several companies, one of them being L.M. Kohn. After an in-person visit, he was impressed with the way the company was founded by Larry Kohn, a financial advisor who experienced first-hand the same problems he had himself, and wanted to create a better way of doing business. He also found comfort in the fact that after starting and running the business for many years, Larry Kohn was bringing his son Drew into the fold to take a leadership role. He knew L.M. Kohn would not go down the same road as his prior employers, forcing him to scramble to transfer his clients. Larry decided to make the move to become independent and join L.M. Kohn, and completed what would be the last account repapering process he would ever have to worry about in his career.
Today Larry enjoys the stability of his life as an independent advisor with L.M. Kohn. He no longer has to worry about leadership decisions uprooting his business and can instead focus on servicing his clients and growing his client base. Larry also appreciates the assistance that L.M. Kohn provides, acting as a backup when Larry is out of the office, as well as providing some important clerical services and the technical support that allows him to compete with the automation that larger firms offer their clients. Finally, working under the L.M. Kohn umbrella gives him access to a network of other independent advisor colleagues, which he has leveraged to keep his business practices updated.
“The folks at L.M. Kohn have been great to work with all these years,” said Larry. “Moving clients is no fun, especially the further you get into your career when you’ve built a sizable book of business. I wanted to partner with a firm that’s going to be around, and they’re not looking to sell out. The service they provide, their attitude toward helping me succeed and what they do for my clients have all been very good.”
To learn more about how L.M. Kohn can provide stability to work to allow you to focus on your clients, contact us today.