(BofA) – Wells Fargo Lures Two Groups from Identical Merrill Department in N. California
December 8, 2020
wolterke – stock.adobe.com
Wells Fargo Advisors swept two groups of brokers servicing a mixed $1 billion of shopper belongings from the identical Merrill Lynch department in northern California in current days.
On Friday, a four-broker group led by James Ok. Watts made the leap with two shopper associates from Merrill’s now 47-advisor Mill Valley department to Wells’ 24-advisor department eight miles away in San Rafael. Watts, who joined Merrill 9 years in the past after 14 years at a Wells bank-affiliated brokerage “hub,” mentioned his workforce produced $four million within the earlier 12 months from purchasers with simply over $450 million in largely fee-based managed accounts.
Three weeks earlier, a three-advisor workforce led by advisors Konstantinos “Kostas” Grigorakis and Henrik Nielsen left the Mill Valley Merrill department the place that they had spent their two-decade brokerage careers for Wells, Grigorakis confirmed. Along with advisor Richard Harding, who joined Merrill ten years in the past, they produced $3.5 million on about $500 million of belongings that they actively handle, in line with two individuals conversant in their guide.
The groups knew one another however didn’t coordinate their strikes, mentioned Watts.
“We crunched the numbers, saw the opportunity and made the same decision,” he mentioned, declining to debate deal phrases.
He and other people near Grigorakis mentioned they talked to a broad spectrum of wirehouses, regionals and unbiased corporations and advisory platform suppliers however determined that Wells was greatest suited to service their purchasers.
Merrill Lynch has had a freeze on hiring skilled advisors for about 4 years, counting on coaching workers from inside its dad or mum Bank of America and relative rookies from regional corporations to interchange an outflow of veterans.
Wells has hiked its recruiting packages to as excessive as 340% of prime advisors’ trailing-12-month manufacturing if they continue to be for 9 years and hit asset switch and development targets. The trouble goals to rebuild the lack of greater than 2,500 brokers throughout its worker and unbiased dealer channels since Wells disclosed pretend accounts created at bank branches by workers making an attempt to hit gross sales quotas.
A Merrill spokesperson didn’t reply to a request for touch upon the departures to Wells from its Mill Valley department.
Watts’ six-person workforce, which included fellow senior vp Eric Caindec and vice presidents Paul LeFebvre and John Paul Max Wyatt, made the transfer to Wells final week.
Caindec started his profession at Smith Barney 14 years in the past, and has been with Merrill and its Bank of America Funding Companies predecessor since 2003. LeFebvre first registered as a dealer in 2002 at UBS Paine Webber and has beforehand labored at Wells in a bank brokerage “pod” with Watts and as a personal shopper advisor earlier than becoming a member of Merrill in 2011.
Wyatt has spent all of his almost-seven-year profession as a registered rep at Merrill in Mill Valley, in line with his BrokerCheck historical past.
Grigorakis, a chartered monetary analyst, turned a dealer in 1999 at Merrill after a stint with McKinsey & Co. and 15 years in academia in Europe and the U.S., in line with his LinkedIn profile. Nielsen has been with Merrill for his nearly 22-year brokerage profession, and Harding joined Merrill in 2010, after a profession that started in 1993 within the authorities securities models of Deutsche Bank and Barclays, in line with their BrokerCheck information.