Citizens Financial Group, Inc. to Expand Wealth Management Business with the Acquisition of Clarfeld Financial Advisors, LLC

Citizens Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE: CFG or “Citizens”) today announced that Citizens Bank, N.A. has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Clarfeld Financial Advisors, LLC (“Clarfeld”), a leading wealth management firm and multi-family office headquartered in Tarrytown, New York. Driven by a commitment to a client-focused service culture and its deep expertise in navigating complex financial needs, Clarfeld has been recognized as one of the industry’s most distinguished independent wealth advisors. The Clarfeld team includes CFAs, CPAs, attorneys and CFPs and utilizes a highly efficient and scalable technology platform. Clarfeld delivers a fully integrated, multi-disciplined approach to managing the financial affairs of high net worth and ultra-high net worth clients, their families and related entities. As of September 30, 2018, Clarfeld held approximately $6.6 billion of assets under management (“AUM”) and approximately $900 million of assets under administration (“AUA”).*

“The Clarfeld acquisition provides a unique opportunity to accelerate our strategy of building a highly competitive wealth management business that is well-positioned to offer a comprehensive range of wealth management and banking services to existing and future clients,” said John Bahnken, president and chief executive officer of Citizens Bank Wealth Management.

Bahnken continued, “Clarfeld’s strong leadership, highly skilled team of wealth management professionals and broad range of advisory services complement our existing platform while adding important scale to our business. I am delighted to announce that upon closing, Robert A. Clarfeld will be named CEO of our combined high net worth and ultra-high net worth businesses. Under Rob’s leadership, we have a significant opportunity to serve the most complex needs of our clients while we continue to focus on expanding our business.”

“For 37 years our team has delivered highly individualized wealth management services through a fully integrated, multi-disciplined approach that has weathered multiple market cycles and shifting income and estate tax laws,” said Robert A. Clarfeld, founder and chief executive officer of Clarfeld. “Citizens shares our deep commitment to delivering exceptional client-centric wealth management services. I am excited about leading the build-out of our combined private wealth platform. With a broader range of products and services, we will be well-positioned to provide an exceptional value proposition to existing and future clients.”

As of September 30, 2018, Citizens Bank Wealth Management had approximately $7.9 billion in AUM and total AUM/AUA of $26.5 billion, including $3.5 billion in AUM and $3.7 billion in AUA within the Citizens Bank Private Wealth Management platform. On a combined basis, Citizens Bank Wealth Management and Clarfeld would oversee approximately $14.4 billion of AUM and $34.1 billion of AUM/AUA.*

Ranked as a top-25 Registered Investment Advisors for 2018 by Barron’s, Clarfeld previously has been highly ranked by Bloomberg and Financial Times. Clarfeld’s founder and CEO, Robert A. Clarfeld, has been highly ranked by Forbes and in 2017, Barron’s ranked him New York’s #1 Independent Wealth Advisor for the ninth-consecutive year.

Upon closing, Clarfeld will continue to operate under its current brand name and become a division of Citizens Bank Wealth Management. Citizens Bank Private Wealth Management will be integrated into Clarfeld. The addition of Clarfeld will enhance Citizens’ ability to provide a full suite of family office, investment, financial planning and tax and estate planning services for existing and new clients. The transaction is expected to close late this year or early next year, subject to customary closing terms and conditions and regulatory approval. Silver Lane Advisors LLC acted as financial advisor to Citizens. Debevoise & Plimpton LLP acted as legal advisor to Citizens. Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP acted as legal advisor to Clarfeld on the transaction.

About Clarfeld Financial Advisors, LLC

Clarfeld Financial Advisors, LLC, headquartered in Tarrytown, New York, with an office in New York City, is a leading wealth management firm and multi-family office. Clarfeld’s team of CFAs®, CPAs, attorneys and CFPs® provides full investment and wealth management services, including comprehensive income tax planning and compliance, estate planning and highly personalized concierge family office services. Clarfeld presently manages more than $6 billion in assets.

About Citizens Bank Wealth Management

Citizens Bank Wealth Management provides integrated banking and investing services to clients to help them grow and protect their wealth, and plan for retirement and other long-term financial objectives. Citizens Bank Wealth Management includes a brokerage arm, Citizens Investment Services, as well as Premier Advisory and Citizens Private Wealth Management, which serve the affluent and high net worth client segments, respectively. Citizens Private Wealth Management delivers comprehensive private banking, financial planning, investment management and trust and estate planning services. Collectively, Citizens Bank Wealth Management’s approximately 900 colleagues are focused on delivering comprehensive wealth management services across the firm’s major markets.

About Citizens Financial Group, Inc.

Citizens Financial Group, Inc. is one of the nation’s oldest and largest financial institutions, with $158.6 billion in assets as of September 30, 2018. Headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island, Citizens offers a broad range of retail and commercial banking products and services to individuals, small businesses, middle-market companies, large corporations and institutions. Citizens helps its customers reach their potential by listening to them and by understanding their needs in order to offer tailored advice, ideas and solutions. In Consumer Banking, Citizens provides an integrated experience that includes mobile and online banking, a 24/7 customer contact center and the convenience of approximately 2,900 ATMs and approximately 1,150 branches in 11 states in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions. Consumer Banking products and services include a full range of banking, lending, savings, wealth management and small business offerings. In Commercial Banking, Citizens offers corporate, institutional and not-for-profit clients a full range of wholesale banking products and services, including lending and deposits, capital markets, treasury services, foreign exchange and interest rate products and asset finance. More information is available at or visit us on Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook.

Forward-Looking Statements

“Safe Harbor” Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: This communication contains “forward-looking statements” — that is, statements related to future, not past, events. In this context, forward-looking statements often address our expected future business and financial performance and financial condition, and often contain words such as “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” “seek,” “see,” “will,” “would,” or “target.” Forward-looking statements by their nature address matters that are, to different degrees, uncertain. Uncertainties that could cause our actual results to be materially different than those expressed in our forward-looking statements include the failure to consummate this transaction or to make or take any filing or other action required to consummate any such transaction on a timely matter or at all. These or other uncertainties may cause our actual future results to be materially different from those expressed in our forward-looking statements.

Citizens Bank Wealth Management is comprised of both banking and brokerage affiliated companies.

©2018 Citizens Financial Group, Inc. Citizens Bank is a brand name of Citizens Bank, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania.


* Data as of September 30, 2018. Amounts may not sum due to rounding.


Citizens Financial Group, Inc.
Megan Griffin, 781-655-2418
Ellen A. Taylor, 203-900-6854

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