Alex. Brown Hires $280 Mln-Asset UBS Miami Team, LPL Nabs $180 Mln Wells Broker
Raymond James Financial’s Alex. Brown unit for high-net-worth clients has added advisors slowly since it was acquired from Deutsche Bank four years ago, but its Miami office this year has proved an exception, thanks to recruits from UBS Wealth Management USA.
At least six UBS advisors have made the trek to Alex. Brown’s 600 Brickell Avenue branch since December, with the latest joining in early July, the company said.
“We came to Alex. Brown for its cultural reputation,” Tudela, the trio’s senior member with 27 years of brokerage experience, said in a prepared statement. “We are three worldly, bilingual women from Venezuela who want to further lead the way for more women to get involved in the financial services industry.”
Alex. Brown regional director Eric Termini called the 13-advisor Miami office, the “epicenter for international business.” Wirehouses such as UBS, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley have constrained services to nonresident clients as anti-money-laundering laws and regulatory reporting requirements have increased, creating a windfall of advisor talent for smaller firms.
Tudela is registered in Houston and San Juan while her partners are in Miami, according to BrokerCheck. The database lists 11 disclosures of client complaints against her, all related to investments in the closed-end Puerto Rico bonds that has afflicted UBS with more than $3.4 billion in complaints, arbitration claims and investigations. Six of the complaints against Tudela have been withdrawn or settled (for less than one-fourth of the $524,500 claims), and she “fully denies” allegations of unsuitable recommendations in the pending claims, according to comments appended to her regulatory record.
She did not return an additional call for comment on the team’s decision.
Raymond James inherited the business now known as Alex. Brown when Deutsche Bank closed the doors of its U.S. wealth business. It retained more than 90% of Deutsche’s more than 200 brokers, but the Alex. Brown unit has grown more slowly than RayJay’s core base of advisers in its employee and independent channels.
Alex. Brown hired five advisors in 2018, according to a press release that did not give a net number, and last year reorganized its sales management structure in what recruiters said was in part an attempt to energize the unit with new hires.
In a separate exit from a wirehouse, New Jersey-based advisor Keith Boyd left Wells Fargo & Co.’s bank branch-based “wealth brokerage services” unit on Friday to join Gladstone Wealth Partners, a hybrid broker/RIA firm affiliated with LPL Financial.
Boyd, Gladstone’s eighth recruit since March, was overseeing $180 million in client assets, LPL said, and a person familiar with his business said he generated around $900,000 for Wells in the previous 12 months.
“In my quest to live a more holistic life, I knew it was in my clients’ best interest to take more control over my business and operate as a fiduciary in an independent practice,” Boyd, who worked for all but three of his 26-year career at Wells and predecessor firms, said in a prepared statement.
He will be the resident adviser in a Flemington, NJ, office of accountants that Gladstone acquired earlier this year, according to Gladstone CEO Richard Frick.
Boyd and Gladstone Wealth founder Robert P. Hudson had been acquainted for seven years, Frick said.
Boyd joined Gladstone’s “partnership” channel, which allows him a payout of around 80% of the revenue he produces. That is less than he could have received through a direct relationship with LPL, but in exchange he receives recruiting, marketing and other expense support. Gladstone in April merged with another LPL firm, Financial Resources Group, to form an office of supervisory jurisdiction with $24 billion in assets firm and around 670 advisors
Frick attributed his new recruit’s departure from Wells to frustration with the continuing fallout from the fake account scandals first disclosed almost four years ago.
In sitting among accountants, he added, Boyd will be in a familiar setting since he worked cheek-to-jowl with retail bankers previously. Wells merged its wealth brokerage services group of bank-based advisors organizationally with its private client group of advisors in 2018, but they remain physically isolated from each other.
Gladstone in April merged with Financial Resources Group, a larger LPL affiliate, and is now an office of supervisory jurisdiction with $24 billion in assets firm and around 670 advisors.