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The AIG Advisor Group, Phoenix, plans to combine 3 of its brokerages into a new entity, AIG Financial Advisors Inc.

The new unit will be an independent broker-dealer comprising registered representatives from the AIG brokerage firms SunAmerica Securities Inc., Sentra Securities Corporation and Spelman & Co. Inc. AIG acquired the 3 brokerages in 1999 as part of its merger with SunAmerica Life Insurance Company.

The AIG Advisor Group, the marketing name for the broker-dealer subsidiaries of American International Group Inc., New York, expects to launch the subsidiary in the second quarter.

The new unit would help the company build a stronger brand identity in the independent broker-dealer industry, says James R. Cannon, president and CEO of AIG Financial Advisors.

“We also recognize that the clients relationship is with their financial advisor, not the broker-dealer,” says Cannon. “Therefore, independent financial advisors affiliated with our broker-dealer can choose to adopt the AIG Financial Advisors name, use the name of their own entity or both.”

Cannon says AIG surveys of financial advisors show they want the flexibility to use either their own names or that of their broker-dealers when dealing with clients.

The move formalizes what had been a reality for the past 18 months, says Cannon, who has been president of all 3 firms during that time.

“If youre looking at it from the standpoint of consolidation, its already done,” he says. “What were doing now is cosmetic.”

Putting the 3 brokers under the AIG aegis allows them to take advantage of the parent companys widely recognized national advertising campaign, Cannon says.

Simultaneously with the launch of the new unit, AIG Advisor Group is undertaking a nationwide campaign to recruit advisors, Cannon says.

The AIG Advisor Group has a network of 7,000 independent financial professionals.

It also includes Advantage Capital Corporation, FSC Securities Corporation and Royal Alliance Associates Inc. Those firms chose not to join the new entity, Cannon says.

“Each of these firms has separate management teams and leadership and chose to operate under their existing names while using AIG Advisor Group as a marketing designation for their advisors,” he says.


Reproduced from National Underwriter Edition, April 29, 2003. Copyright 2003 by The National Underwriter Company in the serial publication. All rights reserved.Copyright in this article as an independent work may be held by the author.