Barclays Wealth said recently that it hired three executives from rival firms, including Donald Gershuny, formerly Bank of America-Merrill Lynch general counsel for global wealth management, who joined Barclays Wealth as general counsel for the Americas. Also Barclays Wealth has appointed David Lewis as managing director and head of banking for the Americas. Lewis was previously head of banking products for the Americas at UBS.
In October, the firm hired a regional manager for its Los Angeles operations, as well as 14 new advisors for branches in the Northeast and Southeast regions — with seven coming from Morgan Stanley and UBS. Barclays now has more than 250 advisors at its 14 branches in the Americas.
The firm hired seven advisors, or investment representatives, for branches in Miami, Palm Beach, Fla.., and Atlanta, including three from Morgan Stanley and one from UBS. “We are delighted to welcome such seasoned professionals to Barclays Wealth,” said Steve Houston, who oversees the Americas branch offices and investment representative network in his role as head of wealth management for the Americas.
In Miami, Tony Esses joins as a director focused on the Latin American market. Previously, Esses worked at HSBC Private Bank for 24 years. In addition, Robert Sperber joins the Miami branch as a director from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, along with James Hafele, a team member who will remain in New York. Sperber also has worked for UBS and Oppenheimer.
In Palm Beach, Matthew Burton joins as a vice from JP Morgan.
Tom Pair joins Barclay’s Atlanta operations as a director from UBS, where he was a private wealth advisor. Prior to UBS, Pair was a vice president at Goldman Sachs in the private wealth management division. Also joining the Atlanta office is John Nicholas, who has been hired as a vice president from Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management. Prior to Morgan Stanley, Nicholas worked for SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, AIG Europe, Wachovia Bank and Chemical Bank.
Forest Simmons joins the Atlanta branch as a vice president from BNY Mellon Wealth Management. He previously worked for JC Bradford, Wachovia and A.G. Edwards.
In New York and Philadelphia, three teams were hired, including three advisors from UBS. “We are pleased to welcome these outstanding teams to Barclays Wealth,” said Houston, in a press release.
Advisors René Joliot, Edgar Ramirez and Romel Rodriguez have joined Barclays Wealth as investment representatives in New York from UBS International. Joliot joins as a director after four years at UBS, where he focused on Latin American and European clients. Ramirez also joins the firm as a director and has 18 years of experience in advising Latin American ultra-high-net-worth clients at UBS, JPMorgan, and Citigroup.
Rodriguez joins Barclays Wealth as a vice president with 11 years of wealth-management experience, including nine years at UBS; he started his career at Merrill Lynch in Florida. Also in New York, advisors Ron Willis and John-Paul Tomassetti have joined as directors and investment
representatives from JP Morgan Chase Private Bank, where they worked since 2004. Prior to JPMorgan Chase, Tomassetti worked at Miller Tabak Roberts and Salomon Smith Barney, while Willis worked at Deutsche Bank and Wachovia.
Gerhard van Arkel and Brett Thomas Meyers joined as investment representatives in Philadelphia from Wilmington Trust. Van Arkel has over 26 years of experience in investment management and wealth advisory with high net worth clients, while Meyers started at Wilmington Trust in 2007.
In Los Angeles, Barclays Wealth hired Brian Sears as a managing director and regional manager. He will report to Houston.
Sears joins from Neuberger Berman in New York. Earlier, he spent 15 years as an investment advisor at Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs.
“We have been very successful in recruiting new investment representatives this year, as the significant global investment the firm is making to the platform and our business continues to attract top-performing advisors,” said Mitch Cox, head of Barclays Wealth, Americas and head of global research and investments, in a statement.
Barclays Wealth advisors focus on clients with $10 million or more in investible assets. Earlier this year, the firm said it planned to invest about $1 billion globally to “transform itself from a top 10 wealth manager to a top tier wealth manager.”
Barclays acquired Lehman Brothers’ private investment management business in September 2008 and has been using the acquired group as a foundation for building this business in the U.S. and Latin America. Following the December 2009 merger of BlackRock and Barclays Global Investors, including Barclay’s market-leading iShares ETF business, Barclays has maintained a 19.9 percent stake in the combined firm.