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Practice Management > Building Your Business

Recruiting Roundup: Baird Grabs Wells FAs, UBS Branch Manager; Royal Adds 2 Indie Groups

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Early Tuesday, Baird said it recruited a team of seven employee advisors with about $770 million in client assets from Wells Fargo (WFC) in Houston, while Royal Alliance announced that it added two independent teams in Chicago and Salt Lake City with combined assets of more than $400 million and nearly $3.5 million in yearly fees and commissions.

In addition, Baird says it is opening a second branch in Houston that will be led by John S. Hantak, who just moved to Baird from UBS (UBS). He will supervise the new Baird team, which includes legacy A.G. Edwards & Sons advisors, which—through acquisitions—became part of Wachovia and later part of Wells. The group’s business model is mainly focused on retirement planning for employees and executive in oil and gas industry.

“We couldn’t be more pleased to welcome John and these highly regarded financial advisors to Baird,” said Michael J. Schroeder, president of Baird Private Wealth Management, in a statement. “Baird’s culture celebrates their entrepreneurial accomplishments and highly specialized expertise in the area of retirement planning for oil and gas industry professionals.”

Most recently, Hantak oversaw more than 50 financial advisors in Stamford and Greenwich, Conn., managing $48 million in advisor revenues. Before this role, he worked for Citi Smith Barney and Prudential. (He is a lifetime member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.)

In Houson, Hantak will work with ex-UBS advisors J. Gillette Burns, Orlando C. Montesino, Andrew A. Atkinson, Richard G. Pfeil, Matthew Leatherwood, Thomas S. Davis and Nelson Shields Jr.

Baird has more than 700 advisors as of early 2013, the company says. Since early 2009, it has added about 275 advisors and branch managers, including new offices in Fort Worth, Texas; Charlotte, N.C.; Sarasota, Fla.; Portland, Maine; Salt Lake City; and Portland, Ore.

“We are excited to expand our footprint in Houston, a market that continues to represent significant growth potential,” said Jarrett Kovics, director of the Texas Market for Baird’s private wealth management business, in a press release. “We extend a warm welcome to these seasoned wealth management professionals, all of whom are legacy A.G. Edwards employees.”

Royal Recruits

Royal Alliance Associates, part of the AIG-owned Advisor Group of independent broker-dealers says that its two new teams moved to affiliate with Royal’s hybrid platform because of the “flexibility and cutting-edge technology” it offers fee-based advisors.

The two new independent teams are JLTD, based in Chicago and led by advisors Timothy McGrath and Horace Seely-Brown; and the Integrated Financial Group of Salt Lake City, which includes advisors Sam Clark, James Davenport, Les Barber, Steve Fulmer and Casey Kotter.

“We are continuing our fourth-quarter 2012 momentum in early 2013,” said Kevin Beard, senior vice president of recruiting, in an interview with AdvisorOne. “We are being more engaged by advisors, who are seeking a long term partner in the broker-dealer space.”

Year to date, Royal Alliance has added affiliated advisors with about $6 million in yearly fees and commissions, he notes.

JLTD dropped its affiliation and registration with Memphis-based Wunderlich Securities in December 2011. After that, it operated as its own stand-alone RIA.

The group is “interested in growing their business beyond $100 million in assets under management, [and] the advisors migrated their existing RIA to Royal Alliance for access to the firm’s proven hybrid platform,” according to Royal Alliance.

One way it plans to grow, says Beard, is purchasing a portion of another Royal Alliance-affiliated team’s book of business and considering the purchase of the entire book.

“This purchase arrangement is not the first, and we are open to opportunities in succession planning and recruiting for those who are planning to be purchased or do some purchasing of a book,” the recruiter said.

The other team recently affiliated with Royal Alliance, Integrated Financial Group, was previously working with Lincoln Financial. It ended its affiliated with Lincoln on March 1.  

“IFG is a planning group, focused on best-in-breed technology and finding a broker-dealer to partner with in fee-based planning,” Beard explained. “The team, which includes several young advisors, has been looking for a broker-dealer that will be around for a long time with best-of-breed technology and platforms.”


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