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January 5, 2023

Cribstone Capital scooped up in California firm’s acquisitions spree

person in blue shirt PHOTO / TIM GREENWAY Cribstone co-founder Scott Upham, now a regional director and partner with EP Wealth Advisors LLC, said joining together “seemed like a natural progression for our firm.”
Cribstone Capital was ranked No. 8 among Maine-based registered investment advisors, according to the most recent Mainebiz Book of Lists.
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Cribstone Capital Management LLC, a registered investment adviser with offices in Augusta and Brunswick, was the third recent East Coast firm acquired by Torrance, Calif.-based EP Wealth Advisors LLC in 2022.

Since the deal closed Dec. 31, Cribstone’s co-founders, Scott Upham and Jeff Burch, have transitioned to serve as regional directors and partners for EP Wealth.

Other staff transitions included the appointment of Amyn Moolji as a managing director on EP Wealth’s portfolio strategy team and the addition of three new employees.

The acquisition is expected to enhance Cribstone’s offerings and services in planning, tax, estate, portfolio strategy, investment and technology and allow the local firm to access the technology and resources of the larger national firm.

The goal is to grow its market beyond Maine to New Hampshire and Vermont, according to a news release.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Cribstone is a fee-only registered investment adviser that provides financial planning and investment resources.

EP is a fee-only registered investment adviser and financial planning firm providing integrated financial planning, investment management and tax and estate planning.

Managing more than $15.1 billion in assets as of Dec. 31, 2021, it’s led by co-founders and managing directors Derek Holman and Brian Parker, along with CEO Patrick Goshtigian and President Ryan Parker. It is backed by Berkshire Partners, a private investment firm in Boston. 

Cribstone is EP’s first office in Maine and sixth and final acquisition of 2022.

Cribstone was ranked No. 8 among Maine-based registered investment advisors, according to the most recent Mainebiz Book of Lists.

The acquisition adds over $357 million in assets under management to EP and brings its total employee base to nearly 330. 

Cribstone is named after the granite bridge linking Bailey and Orr's islands in Harpswell.

In the fiduciary-based field, investment advisers must comply to rules showing they have the investor's best interests in mind.

Independent RIAs don't fit the paradigm of the big investment firm, Upham has told Mainebiz; the priority is to figure out what a client wants, then help achieve it.

“I have enjoyed a decades-long professional relationship with members of EP’s leadership team, so I was well aware of our shared vision for client experience. Joining together seemed like a natural progression for our firm and a great opportunity for our current and future clients,” Upham said in the release. 

Burch said the additional depth and breadth of resources and services provided by EP will allow the Cribstone team to focus on and enhance client services and broaden its reach in Maine and throughout the region.

"Scott, Jeff and their team share EP Wealth's focus on delivering a plan for financial health for clients and a platform for employee growth and development,” said Patrick Goshtigian, CEO of EP Wealth. 

EP Wealth has achieved double-digit, organic growth year-over-year since taking a minority investment from Palm Beach, Fla., financial services holding company Wealth Partners Capital Group in 2017.

The acquisition of Cribstone marks its 26th acquisition over that period. Over the past five years, EP has also acquired firms in California, Washington, Colorado, Arizona, Illinois, Texas, Utah, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. 

“The established relationships and shared goals between Cribstone and EP made this a strong and seamless pairing,” said Nick Trepp, a principal at Wealth Partners.

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