Recruiting Scene: Wirehouses Lose a Few, Win a Few

Focus adds a breakaway group, Raymond James picks up a trio, and Morgan Stanley nabs a high-net-worth team

The breakaway broker trend continues. The breakaway broker trend continues.

Focus Financial Partners says that two Merrill Lynch advisors have gone independent as an RIA firm on its platform. At the same time, Raymond James attracted three registered reps from Morgan Stanley to its employee channel in Colorado.

But the wirehouses know how to play the recruiting game as well, of course. In fact, Morgan Stanley just attracted a big wealth team to its Graystone Consulting group.

Focus Financial says Sean Campbell and Tim Deegan join it from Bank of America Merrill Lynch in Richmond, Virginia, with about $575 million in assets.

“One of the most valuable assets we see in Campbell Deegan is the trust clients have in them … built upon the team’s top-notch expertise and client service. That, paired with their eagerness to grow, makes them a perfect candidate for Focus,” said Chris Dupuy, president of Focus Independence, in a statement.

Campbell came to Richmond in 2001 and went to work with his father, Colin Campbell, after three years with Merrill in Atlanta.

“Richmond is a place we hold dear to our heart, as we have spent most of our lives here,” the younger Campbell said, in a press release. “Going independent is a natural step for us, and we are excited to work with Focus, [which] has a track record of helping entrepreneurs elevate their businesses. With access to Focus’ capital and resources, we hope to strengthen our regional presence and further expand our service offerings.”

Raymond James Adds 3 in Colorado

Raymond James said Thursday that Janis Cross, certified financial planner Matthew West and A.J. Schultz are now part of its Colorado Springs office, having left Morgan Stanley, where they managed about $144 million in client assets and had some $1.13 million in yearly fees and commissions.

“Our continued efforts to expand the Raymond James footprint in the Western U.S. are seeing very positive results," according to Pat Allison, Western division director for Raymond James & Associates. "Each of these advisors puts their clients’ interests first, which completely aligns with our values and focus, making them a great addition to the firm.”

Cross spent 15 years in hospital administration and began work at Morgan Stanley in 1997; West began his financial services career in 2001 with Citigroup/Smith Barney, becoming a financial advisor in 2004 and staying with the firm after it was acquired by Morgan Stanley in 2009; Schultz interned with Smith Barney while in college, joined the firm full time after graduating and became a financial advisor in 2011.

Each of the advisors ran solo practices until their recent decision to form a team and join Raymond James, according to a press release.

Morgan Stanley Momentum

The StennerZohny Group is now part of a Morgan Stanley wealth office in Silicon Valley.

The team includes two institutional consulting directors, V. Thane Stenner and Youssef Zohny, as well as Simon Jochlin, an advisor associate, and three client service associates.

They join from Richardson GMP Ltd., a Canada-based independent wealth management firm, with about $576 million of client assets and yearly production of $6.8 million.

“We are very excited to be able to bring the global reach, exclusive access and world-class platform and resources of Graystone Consulting and Morgan Stanley to our valued North American clientele,” said Stenner, in a statement.

"After two years of due diligence on platforms in Canada and globally, we determined that the Graystone Consulting platform at Morgan Stanley was the best fit for our clients and family office/institutional practice,” explained Zohny, in a press release.

Stenner has almost 29 years of experience in advising ultra-high net worth families, having worked earlier for CIBC World Markets and Merrill Lynch International Private Client Group.

Zohny previously managed two alternative equity funds and began his career as a quantitative analyst with an independent asset manager. He has advised HNW and other clients for 12 years.

--- Check out Raymond James Adds $2.4M Wells Fargo Team on ThinkAdvisor.

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