Bob Oros to Become HighTower’s New CEO—Sources
HighTower Advisors has zeroed in on discount brokerage veteran Robert Oros to succeed its founder Elliot Weissbluth as chief executive, according to two sources.
Oros, whose career began at Charles Schwab & Co. two decades ago and included executive stints in clearing and custody at LPL Financial and Fidelity Brokerage Services, is expected to join HighTower in early 2019, said the sources, one of whom works at HighTower.
His experience building firms that service independent wealth managers would complement the Chicago-based firm’s new strategy of expanding through acquisition of large registered investment advisory practices rather than through its initial plan under Weissbluth of helping wirehouse brokers go independent.
Oros did not return a call for comment at HD Vest Financial Services, the Irving, Texas-based broker-dealer that he joined less than two years ago as chief executive officer.
Vest, which works with around 3,700 independent brokers overseeing $45 billion of assets, announced two weeks ago that Oros would leave in mid-November to spend more time with his family but serve as a consultant through March 2019. The firm specializes in working with brokers who are certified public accountants.
A spokeswoman for HighTower, which has 190 advisors with $42 billion in advisory assets, according to its website and regulatory filings, did not immediately return a request for comment.
Weissbluth, who founded the firm in 2008, planned to become the firm’s nonexecutive chairman once a successor was chosen, HighTower said in August. The company is majority owned by private equity firm Thomas H. Lee Partners, which has reorganized its board and top management following a wave of departures by large advisory teams and staffers in recent years.
Oros, who is in his early 50s, spent the first nine years of his brokerage career at Schwab. He subsequently ran custom clearing services at LPL, was national sales manager at Trust Company of America and, from 2012 to 2017, Fidelity’s executive vice president in charge of clearing and custody for RIAs, according to BrokerCheck and to his Vest biography.
Oros’ move could bode well with Fidelity, which is one of four broker-dealers that HighTower recommends to customers as custodians for their assets. At HD Vest, Oros transitioned the company’s clearing relationship to Fidelity’s National Financial Services from Wells Fargo Clearing Services.