In search of its first acquisition, a West End financial firm landed in a tiny town in the Shenandoah Valley.
Alpha Omega Wealth Management this week completed a deal to absorb Diveley Lind & Associates, a smaller firm in Fort Defiance, Virginia, in between Staunton and Harrisonburg.
The deal brings together Alpha Omega’s $250 million in clients’ assets, with Diveley Lind’s $90 million.
Diveley Lind’s two principals, Lynn Diveley and Carl Lind, and one additional employee are now part of Alpha Omega, which changed its name to Alpha Omega Investment Advisors when the deal closed Nov. 1.
Money did change hands in the deal, but terms were not disclosed.
Alpha Omega was founded in May 2009 by Craig Forbes and Art Washburn. The firm acts as a registered investment advisor on a fee-only basis. Diveley Lind had a similar business model and its principals were looking for an exit strategy toward their eventual retirement.
“What they do and what we do matches pretty nicely, which is really hard to get in this business,” Forbes said.
The two sides were introduced by Schwab, the investment giant that operates the platform Alpha Omega uses to manage its clients’ assets.
Forbes said the deal has been in the works for about 18 months, part of Alpha Omega’s long-running appetite to expand.
“We’ve been looking to grow since the day we opened our doors,” Forbes said. “But finding the right… nothing’s ever really worked.”
Connecting the two firms across the state was a natural move, Washburn said, as each side has clients in between the two territories. Alpha Omega’s client roster includes about 100 families, institutions, endowments, foundations and retirement plans. Diveley Lind manages the assets of about 90 families.
With five employees in Richmond and three in Fort Defiance, Alpha Omega will look to continue to grow, though it’s in no hurry.
“It took us this long to find the first one,” Washburn said. “So we’re not in any rush to grow just to grow.”