Kansas City Life sells financial services subsidiary

07/21/2014 9:56 AM

07/21/2014 1:03 PM

Kansas City Life Insurance Co. on Monday announced the sale of its financial services subsidiary to Securities America.

The agreement calls for Sunset Financial Services to transfer its broker-dealer business, investment advisory accounts and other assets to Securities America, which is a subsidiary of Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services.

Financial terms were not disclosed. The transaction requires the approval of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

Sunset Financial has about 268 independent registered representatives nationwide, about $18 million in gross annual revenue and $2.4 billion in assets under management. The company sells variable life insurance and annuity products.

Kansas City Life said it thinks the sale will benefit both its customers and the sales force. Kansas City Life said Securities America will be able to improve customer service through a broader mix of products and better technology.

Securities America was founded in 1984 and is based in the Omaha suburb of LaVista. It is one of the nation’s largest independent brokerage firms, with a network of more than 1,800 independent advisers who handle more than $50 billion in assets under management.

Kansas City Life said it will maintain a branch office for Securities America, under the name KCL Service Co., to continue to support customers and agents.

“Kansas City Life is seeking to focus its business operations on its core competency, namely providing superior life and annuity products through its longstanding agent distribution system,” Walter Bixby, Kansas City Life’s executive vice president and vice chairman, said in a statement. “Like other similar (firms), Sunset Financial Services’ attempts to achieve growth have been challenged by increasing costs associated with compliance and technology.”

Following the sale, Bixby said Sunset Financial will continue to focus on issuing, developing and marketing variable insurance products for Kansas City Life.

To reach Steve Rosen, call 816-234-4879 or send email to srosen@kcstar.com.

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