Three AIG Advisor Group broker/dealers will merge into one under a plan announced during the Financial Services Institute Orlando conference. SunAmerica Securities, Sentra Securities, and Spelman and Company, which already share CEO James Cannon and a common headquarters in Phoenix, will become AIG Financial Advisors. The new B/D will take wing in the second quarter if regulators give it their blessing.
"We had been operating as one organization," says Cannon, "and I felt that branding was a challenge. We had three names but they didn't mean much in the market anymore." In addition, many of Cannon's reps wanted to use the AIG name, which has been bolstered by the giant insurance company's national ad campaigns. Joseph "Joby" Gruber, CEO of AIG's FSC Securities, notes, meanwhile, that his Atlanta-based B/D and Royal Alliance Associates in New York will continue to use their current names even though they share an increasing number of back-office functions with Cannon's firms. Among factors keeping them independent, says Gruber, are their strong corporate cultures as well as a fear of losing reps if FSC and Royal were merged into the new AIG Financial Advisors.