First Republic Nabs $6-Mln UBS Producer in Los Angeles
(Corrects second and fourth paragraphs to note three support staff also moved with Levine.)
UBS Wealth Management USA on Friday lost a big producer to First Republic Bank in Los Angeles.
Steven H. Levine, who moved along with three support staff to First Republic’s private wealth management arm, had generated some $6 million in annual revenue from $2 billion in client assets, according to two sources familiar with the move and his practice. He has 31 years of experience and had been part of UBS’s private wealth management unit working with wealthy individuals, families, foundations and corporations, according to his former UBS website.
Levine, who joined UBS in 2009 from Credit Suisse, did not return a call for comment at his Los Angeles branch at First Republic.
His former partner, advisor Steven Westerman, a 13-year industry veteran, stayed at UBS along with a client associate, sources said. Westerman, who began his career at Credit Suisse in 2004 and also joined UBS in 2009, did not return a call for comment.
Levine’s exit adds to a steady stream of departures from UBS at a time when it has retrenched from veteran broker hiring and is focused on retention of its largest teams. The firm, which has around 6,900 advisors in its “Americas” division, earlier this month lost veteran manager Stephen McCashin in San Francisco and a multi-million dollar team in Denver.
A spokeswoman for UBS declined to comment on Levine or say whether it will seek to enforce its non-solicitation provisions. The firm in December withdrew from the Protocol for Broker Recruiting, the industry agreement that allows brokers to contact their former clients when moving among member firms.
Levine had built his practice while at Credit Suisse in part by prospecting a number of wealthy executives from global insurer American International Group, one of the sources said. He started his brokerage career at Smith Barney in 1987 and also worked at Lehman Brothers, Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette Securities, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley before joining Credit Suisse in 2004, according to his BrokerCheck history.
His move reinforces First Republic’s reputation as an aggressive recruiter since it relaunched its brokerage operations some five years ago with the purchase of Luminous Capital.
San Francisco-based First Republic, which has around 150 brokers, in July recruited a 26-year industry veteran with around $4 million in production from Merrill Lynch in Boston and so far this year has hired dozens of multi-million dollar producers from wirehouses and other large competitors.