NAILBA and Finseca announced today that their respective board of directors have voted to initiate a process to explore a merger, which would create a powerful industry lobbying group.
This process is the culmination of significant due diligence conducted by a joint task force that included NAILBA and Finseca members and staff, the groups said in a news release. The next step in the process is to bring the joint task force work to the respective memberships.
A merger between NAILBA and Finseca would result in stronger brokerage distribution and accelerated efforts to reunify the profession – ultimately, moving the profession to a position of greater significance with carriers, policymakers, and the consumers we collectively serve, the press release said.
During NAILBA's November annual conference, CEO Dan LaBert touted the revival of the brokerage trade association, which scaled back its elaborate conferences in recent years. But the tough days are over, LaBert said.
"NAILBA finished in the black in 2020 for the first time in nearly a decade," he said.
NAILBA substituted Engage 39 during the COVID-19 shutdown. The mix of virtual taped and live sessions drew 2,200 viewers, he said conference attendees.
"We had to think differently," LaBert said. "We had to reinvent ourselves. We had to build and repair relationships. While the work is far from done, the voice of independent brokerage is well positioned for the future."
Finseca began operations in mid-2020 from the merger of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting and GAMA International.
Finseca has a bold goal, CEO Marc Cadin said: to unify all of financial services in one coordinated effort around education, advocacy and elevation.
“For too long, our profession has lacked a unified voice and collective action to overcome challenges and increase our impact," he said in a news release.
A further merger makes sense for NAILBA and Finseca, various leaders said in comments included in today's news release:
“NAILBA is a truly unique community for independent brokerage distribution,” said Jason E. Lea, Immediate Past Chair of NAILBA. “But Finseca’s membership model would seamlessly enable communities, like NAILBA’s, to have the benefit of scale and a stronger voice, while still preserving the values and independence that makes us exceptional. The task force strongly believes that Finseca is the perfect partner for NAILBA. Given the unanimous support of our board to move forward with discussions, we look forward to bringing this conversation to our entire membership.”
“With NAILBA being the home of independent brokerage distribution and Finseca being the home of the top financial security professionals (both advisors and leaders), this merger would mean an even stronger, collective voice for our profession,” said Jeri Turley, Board Chair of Finseca. “Ultimately, we expect that influence will drive better outcomes and greater relevance not only across the profession but also with policymakers and our consumers. We look forward to continuing our conversations with the entire NAILBA and Finseca memberships so that, together, we can discuss what a unified membership might mean for this community and our mission of Financial Security for All.”
“We continue to see the impact a stronger, more unified voice can have on our work – both with policymakers and with the consumers we serve,” said Marc Cadin. “We welcome the opportunity to add key communities like NAILBA to our movement. Finseca was created to advance the cause of delivering financial security for all and reunifying the profession will help us achieve that goal more quickly. This mission is more important than ever.”
“With more than 40 years of unmatched leadership, NAILBA has served the independent brokerage distribution community exceptionally well,” said Dan LaBert. “Given our strong history of success, we welcome the opportunity to build on that for our members and the entire profession – something only found at Finseca. The threats to the profession have reached critical mass, and it’s time for us to all sit down to discuss what opportunities joining forces would create for each of us individually and collectively. We look forward to continuing this conversation.”