Raymond James Grabs $4.2M Advisors; Morgan Stanley Adds $4.5M Teams

Focus Financial and Advisor Center also share the names of independent advisors they've helped switch affiliation

Raymond James (RJF) announced more recruits from the wirehouses with a total of $4.5 million in fees and commissions, while Morgan Stanley (MS) shared the names of the new teams it just recruited from rivals with about $4.2 million in production. Independent broker-dealers and advisor consolidators also released information about their latest recruits.

Last week, Raymond James said Kyle Gearhart, CFP, moved to the company’s employee broker-dealer in Cincinnati from Merrill Lynch (BAC) recently with about $2.2 million in yearly fees and commissions and $300 million in client assets.

“It is a pleasure to welcome Kyle to Raymond James and our Cincinnati office,” said Tash Elwyn, president of Raymond James & Associates, in a press release. “He brings a valuable combination of knowledge and experience, but most important, a deep caring for his clients and doing what is in their best interest. His client-first attitude and practice align with our values and culture at Raymond James, and we look forward to providing support to him and his clients.”

Along with Gearhart, advisor Alexandra Eichler moved to Raymond James, as did two associates.

“There were two main reasons why I chose to join Raymond James,” said Gearhart, in a statement. “First, there is flexibility. I feel that at Raymond James, I can truly do what is right for my clients. Second, there is accessnot only to outstanding research, but also to senior leadership. While visiting the home office, I met with RJA’s president, Tash Elwyn, who made me feel very confident that Raymond James was the right firm, a firm that offers the support I need to manage my clients’ money with integrity.”

Gearhart began his financial services career with PNC Bank (Central Trust at the time) as an analyst before joining Merrill Lynch in 1994. Eichler is a financial advisor and candidate in Raymond James’ Advisor Mastery Program (AMP), a program designed to train new financial advisors.

Also joining the employee broker-dealer of Raymond James are Gene Marx and Catherine Hunter, CFP, in Charlotte, N.C., from UBS (UBS). The team manages more than $227 million in client assets and has about $1.9 million in annual revenue.

“I am pleased to welcome Gene and Catherine to Raymond James,” said Ed Ferguson, Charlotte branch manager, in a press release. “They are an exceptional team, bringing years of experience and a proven track record of outstanding client service. We are glad they chose to join Raymond James, and we look forward to providing the support they need to grow their practice and serve their clients.”

Marx and Hunter come to Raymond James from UBS Financial Services, where they managed more than $227 million in client assets and had $1.9 million in annual revenue.

“There are several aspects that attracted us to Raymond James,” said Marx, in a statement. “Perhaps the most important to us was the firm’s longstanding client-first culture and its continued focus on its core business – wealth management. Raymond James’ culture and focus align with that of our practice, and during our due diligence, we found that Raymond James offers the access, support and flexibility we need to grow as well as to provide the best service to our clients.”

Marx has been in the securities business for 23 years. He was with Smith Barney for 14 years and worked with UBS for more than eight years.

Raymond James’ independent channel recently welcomed Paul C. Allen, CFP, and David Schadel, CFP, in Brentwood, Tenn., according to Scott Whitley, regional director for RJFS. The team operates as Wealth Strategies Partners and moved to Raymond James from Wiley Bros.-Aintree Capital, where they managed more than $200 million in client assets and had annual fees and commissions in excess of $1.4 million.

“Our practice has experienced tremendous growth over the past 12 years,” said Allen, president of WSP in a statement, “but the time had come for us to be in charge of our own destiny. During our due diligence, we found that Raymond James offers the wealth management resources and platforms our clients desire and the advisor support we need to further grow our business. Focused on the demands of clients today, the firm continually invests in industry-leading technology. I’m looking forward to using resources like Goal Planning & Monitoring for reporting and financial planning.”

Allen has been in the business for 18 years. He began his career as a financial advisor at Prudential Securities. Schadel joined Allen’s practice in September 2010.

“We are thrilled to welcome this exceptional team to Raymond James,” said Whitley. “Their client-first and conservative values align with those of our firm, and we look forward to providing support to them, their practice and, in turn, their clients.”

Morgan Stanley Recruits

Morgan Stanley announced last week that it had attracted the Sand Hill Group from Wells Fargo and the Tedesco/Madden group from UBS (UBS).

The Sand Hill Group — James Wong, Matthew Barker, Justin Harris and Desiderio (Tony) Rodriquez — joined Morgan Stanley's Menlo Park, Calif., office in Silicon Valley. The team reports to complex manager Scott Rash. It has total production of nearly $2.6 million and assets of $264 million.  

The Tedesco/Madden team — Daniel Tedesco and Dennis Madden — moved to Morgan Stanley's 1211 Avenue of the Americas office in New York, where it now reports to complex manager Patrick Langone. The group’s combined production is close to $1.6 million, and its assets total $161 million.

Independent Movement

Focus Financial Partners said Tuesday that it has recently facilitated four strategic mergers for two partner firms, Telemus Capital and Buckingham Asset Management. With the completion of these transactions, Focus has advised and supported eight mergers and new hires for its partner firms this year, adding more than $1 billion in additional client assets.

“Large, midsize and small RIA firms continue to look for new ways to grow, not just organically but through mergers and the addition of new talent,” said Rajini Kodialam, co-founder and managing director at Focus Financial Partners, in a press release.

“These recent transactions are examples of the strategic support inherent to our value proposition,” he added. “With Focus’ capital, relationships and backing, partner firms can stay focused on their clients while strengthening their growth initiatives and business continuity plans, and enhancing their client service offerings.”

Supported by Focus Financial Partners, the following strategic transactions have closed in 2014:

  • Telemus Capital, a $2.2 billion Michigan-based Focus partner firm, has completed two transactions, acquiring Concentric Capital, an independent wealth management firm based in Beverly Hills, Calif., to expand its offering to entertainment and sports industry clients; In February, Telemus named ex-J.P. Morgan (JPM) advisor James Housler (who manages about $100 million in client assets) as partner and senior advisor in its Ann Arbor, Mich., office.
  • Buckingham Asset Management, a St. Louis, Missouri-based Focus partner firm that, along with its sister firm, BAM Advisor Services, that manages or administers more than $22 billion in client assets, has acquired Irvine, Calif.-based Wealth Management Group (WMG) with roughly $100 million in client assets; in February, Buckingham hired Tim Maurer of Charleston, S.C., who joined the firm to advise clients and provide regular market commentary and industry insights for the BAM Alliance.

The Advisor Center, an online recruiting program, said it has helped two advisors who formerly were affiliated with Cambridge Investment Research move to NFP Advisor Services Group.

Howard Richards, CFP, and Jim GoodlandMinnesota-based financial advisors with more than 42 years of combined experiencemoved to NFP after 12 years with Cambridge. The RIAs manage a combined $175 million in client assets.

Advisor Center says it has helped reps with $518 million in total assets switch firms so far this year.

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