ON THE MOVE-Benjamin Edwards lands 4 advisers from Wells Fargo
Aug 31 (Reuters) - Benjamin F. Edwards & Co, a boutique brokerage with family ties to the old A.G. Edwards & Sons, opened a new office in Kansas after landing four veteran advisers from Wells Fargo & Co on Friday.
The new hires joined Benjamin Edwards from Wells Fargo Advisors, the brokerage unit of the San Francisco-based bank. Their new office is based in Leawood, a suburb of Kansas City.
"It's a strong group of financial advisers who fit very well into our model," said Benjamin Edwards' director of branch services, Marty Altenberger, in an interview on Friday.
Altenberger said the St. Louis-based firm, which now has 25 branches in 15 states, has attracted many veteran advisers because of its small size relative to other larger brokerages.
"I think our size is our advantage," he said. "We're nimble."
Among the new additions, advisers Lawrence Grant Ingram and Gary Liberty moved to Benjamin Edwards as a team, along with their registered financial associate Monet Matthews. The two advisers were both legacy A.G. Edwards advisers with roots dating back more than a decade.
A.G. Edwards & Sons was acquired in 2007 by Wachovia, which one year later was acquired by Wells Fargo. Many legacy A.G. Edwards advisers stayed with the brokerage through the acquisitions.
Also on the move, advisers Brian Wiklund and John Diederich joined Benjamin Edwards' Leawood office as individual advisers from Wells Fargo. They were both also legacy A.G. Edwards advisers who had been with their old firm for roughly a decade each. Wiklund was joined by registered financial associate Julie Keithline.
With the opening of the new office in Kansas, Benjamin Edwards also hired assistant branch manager Lori Cox, who was previously a Kansas City market operations manager for Wells Fargo Advisors.
In a separate move, Benjamin Edwards also added adviser Tom Morrison in Illinois on Tuesday from Morrison Financial Services, Ltd, his old independent practice he founded in 1983. He closed his practice to join Benjamin Edwards' Wheaton office.
Since its founding in 2008, Benjamin Edwards has expanded its adviser base by hiring dozens of legacy A.G. Edwards advisers from Wells Fargo. Since the start of the year, the firm has added at least 21 veteran advisers from Wells Fargo, based on moves tracked by Reuters. The firm does not disclose advisers' individual assets under management.
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