LPL Financial said that an experienced Oppenheimer financial advisor has left the firm to launch a new independent practice and affiliated with LPL’s affiliation model aimed at wirehouse breakaways, Strategic Wealth Services.

Tower 68 Financial Advisors — a nod to Tower 68 in Newport Beach, California, where founder and CEO Ken South worked as a lifeguard in his teens — now includes chief operating officer Steve Arcos and an operational support team, according to LPL.

“As a former lifeguard, no one knew that beach as well as I did. It was my job to protect people and keep them from harm’s way,” South said in a statement. “That’s what we do as advisors — we take care of our clients and do what’s right for their financial futures.”

The group oversees around $550 million in advisory, brokerage and retirement plan assets, LPL says.

South started his financial services industry career in 1985 and formed his own independent practice in 2006, according to LPL. He and his team decided to go with LPL in large part because of the firm’s technology, in particular its trading platform, South says in a statement.

LPL launched Strategic Wealth Services, its affiliation model for wirehouse breakaways, last year. The platform has lured several Wells Fargo teams in 2020, while two more Wells teams affiliated with the LPL channel earlier this year.

In April, a team of advisors with $650 million in client assets at Merrill Lynch started a new practice and affiliated with the LPL channel. And last month, three Morgan Stanley advisors formed their own practice with the channel.