Selling A "Shell" Broker Dealer

“Shell”Broker/Dealer: A broker/dealer in good standing with all relevant regulatory authorities, approved to do business subject to it’s membership agreement, being sold without accounts or production.

Can One Sell a “Shell” Broker Dealer?

Yes. And the process is neither difficult nor time consuming, from a sellers perspective. There are many buyers for clean shells, ranging from registered reps starting their own broker/dealers to major financial institutions that need a broker/dealer to accomplish a structural goal. We are constantly vetting buyers and sellers of clean broker/dealers. And our process preserves strict confidentiality; your firm will never be openly shopped. Potential Buyers will not know the name of the firm until you have given us specific permission to release the name.

What is the Process?

The first step is to make confidential contact with BD Exchange. You will be given a dedicated, experienced team that will guide you through the entire process. Our process is comprehensive, and we will assist you at all stages to ensure a transition that you are comfortable with. We do not believe in wasting time – either yours or ours. Unlike “open” services, where buyers and sellers are simply put in touch upon demand (no matter how innapropriate), we present only buyers who have been qualified on a number of relevant issues, by BD Exchange, in advance. Rest assured that any buyer we present is serious and capable of following through the transition – to regulatory approval and beyond. As a finder, we take pride in not wasting our clients' time. This is the real value we add to the process; anybody can give out a phone number - we like to know our clients a bit better, and work to bring together buyers and sellers who are truly suited to one another.

How Long Will it Take?

This depends on a number of factors, including certain transactional necessities you may have, as well as market conditions. All things considered, it normally takes from two weeks to several months to bring in a qualified buyer who is able to see the purchase through to regulatory approval. It is important to note that you will need to give the FINRA thirty (30) days notice prior to effecting a proposed transaction. You will also be making a filing at the same time as notification (the firm will need to file a "Continuing Membership Application" pursuant to rule 1017 on behalf of the buyers) to initiate the Continuing Membership Applications process. More information is available in "Client Resources" in the FINRA Links section. There is a link to the "Guide to Continuing Membership Applications". Regulatory approval of the transaction will of course take several months. During this transition period the Buyer will have typically escrowed 100% of the purchase funds.

Considering Filing a BDW?

Please call us before you do. We may have a buyer who has a clear and present need for what you’ve got, and who is ready to transact right now. In filing a BDW, you may be throwing away the significant value inherent in the Broker Dealer structure. Please keep in mind that the Membership rules stipulate that you must be engaged in business to keep your BD active. Once you realise that you may not be doing business in the future, the clock has started ticking; eventually you will need to withdraw. So it makes sense to contact us as early as possible.