Transition your business


Switching firms is a milestone in your career. As you explore broker/dealers, settle for nothing less than a supportive environment that fosters enthusiasm for your practice and confidence in your clients’ satisfaction.

Local Leader

Girl in Glasses

Meet your local leader

Your local leader is your primary point of contact as you explore, ask questions, get acquainted with Waddell & Reed, and move toward an affiliation decision.

Once affiliated, your leader will remain active and engaged. After all, your leader understands your business, the issues you face, your goals and the challenges of running a practice and will provide personal guidance and direction throughout the life of your practice.

Doing Business

Define your practice setup

One-size does not fit all when it comes to how you run your business. Let your objectives for your practice and strengths as a business owner drive how you set up shop, while Waddell & Reed helps you manage the paper work and logistics.


Operate as a sole practitioner

Going solo appeals to the advisor who is eager to run his or her own show and is comfortable making decisions. You may choose the sole practitioner route if you:

  • Want to control every decision from the investment products you offer to the events you host to the coffee brewed in your office
  • Prefer to keep low overhead and run a lean and mean business
  • Seek a flexible lifestyle
  • Are not intimidated by being responsible for the full scope of work, from generating business to event planning to non-revenue-generating tasks

Join a team

Joining a team may be a strategically sound approach if you value enhanced support, shared expertise and collaboration. You maintain your independence while gaining benefits such as:

  • Expanded client service
  • Partnering with advisors of similar purpose, vision and goals
  • Client retention
  • Succession and transition planning
  • Widening your sphere of influence
  • Increased production potential

Waddell & Reed offers consultation, training, planning and ongoing support for advisors whose practice success strategy includes forming or joining a team.

Operate within the Business Partner Model

Build your business income by partnering with fellow financial advisors without the full commitment of a traditional team. This model gives you the opportunity to:

  • Create a revenue sharing arrangement with an unlimited number of recruited advisors.
  • Associate with peers before formally teaming or acquiring a book of business.
  • Retain your own brand and business location while generating additional revenue.


Brand your business Waddell & Reed

Align with the Waddell & Reed brand and benefit from a name associated with more than 80 years of strength and stability. As a Waddell & Reed branded business, you have access to ready-to-use marketing materials, signage, social media content, letterhead, business cards, and other resources, all aligned with the firm look, logo and voice.

Do business as (DBA) your own brand

You may prefer the autonomy of operating under a different name and creating a visual brand identity that reflects your business. While you have access to the body of Waddell & Reed branded marketing materials as a DBA, you also may choose to work with our marketing professionals for services such as developing your brand name and look, writing web content, or creating custom materials.


Select your office location

Enjoy the freedom of choosing your office location and décor when you set up your personal branch office (PBO). In a PBO, you can office on your own or with other advisors, brand your practice Waddell & Reed or do business as your own brand, lease or buy your space, and choose commercial, multi-tenant or residential space. To assist in locating and leasing your PBO, Waddell & Reed has partnered with the commercial real estate brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield.

Transition Support


Transition seamlessly and smoothly

Making the decision to move firms and going through the process are two very different experiences.

Get seamless and comprehensive transition assistance that allows you to stay focused on your clients.

Our competitive transition program gives eligible candidates an opportunity to receive:

  • Upfront forgivable loan
  • Potential for transition bonus
  • Payout floor for first two years
  • Affiliation fee waived six months
  • Up to $50,000 ACAT transfer fee reimbursement budget
  • $1,000 licensing budget
  • On-site transition support
  • Pre-affiliation training

A transition specialist will partner with you to coordinate resources, remove obstacles, answer questions and lead you through every step of the process, including:


Your transition specialist will coordinate the review of your business mix, existing contract, outside business activity or other special circumstances. Your specialist also will help navigate the timing of your resignation and affiliation and ensure compliance with Regulation S-P.

Transfer of licenses

Our licensing professionals will expedite the transfer of your registrations, ensuring the process complies with ever-changing FINRA and state policies and procedures.

Connecting with business development and sales support teams

Meet with our business development and sales support teams to map out sales and product strategies, identify opportunities to grow your business and learn about professional development programs.

Technology training

Learn about the options available in the technology suite and receive training based on how and when you want to receive information.

Compensation and benefits overview

Your local leader will review and explain your compensation package and help ensure that you maximize your income potential.

Compensation & Incentives

Get rewarded for your meaningful work

The advisor community at Waddell & Reed shares common goals of growing their practices, doing meaningful work and helping clients be successful.

For these they work relentlessly and enjoy competitive payouts and incentives that recognize their accomplishments.


Our compensation grid features commissions up to 94%, based on total gross revenue. 

Based on T-12 TGR
From To Tier # Payout Rate
2,000,000 + 8 up to 94%
1,000,000 1,999,999 7 92%
750,000 999,999 6 90%
500,000 749,999 5 85%
250,000 499,999 4 80%
200,000 249,999 3 75%
125,000 199,999 2 60%
0 124,999 1 50%



This annual business meeting features nationally recognized speakers covering business, financial and life topics; investment management professionals discussing industry trends; and practice-enhancing workshops. The top 400 advisors, based on total gross revenue, have meals, business expenses and transportation covered. All other advisors can attend the meeting for a reasonable fee. 


Recognizing superior sales achievement for advisors ranking 101 through 200, based on total gross revenue, Summit is a four-day trip for the qualifier and a guest to an exclusive destination.


Recognizing superior sales achievement for the top 100 advisors, based on total gross revenue, Crest is a week-long trip for the qualifier and a guest. Past destinations include a Mediterranean cruise, Cabo San Lucas and Park City, Utah.

President's Council

The top 12 advisors nationwide form the President’s Council. Each member of the council is invited to special meetings for team building, professional development and networking with executive management.

We commit to offering the resources you expect from a top-tier broker-dealer and the integrity you require as an advisor and business owner

Our Commitment to Advisors