Wells Soldiers On in Northwest, Nabbing Brokers from UBS, Jones and Waddell
(Updates with assets under management figures in sixth and eighth paragraphs.)
Despite the morale-diminishing effects of its parent’s fake-account scandal on brokers, Wells Fargo Advisors has been scoring some recruiting victories as it battles the bad news with sweetened deal terms.
The firm’s private client group has hired three advisors in the Northwest in recent weeks, according to a company source and BrokerCheck records.
On Wednesday, Wells’ Spokane, Wash., branch welcomed 20-year industry veteran Scott G. Bowman from UBS Financial Services in the same city. Bowman had been with UBS for 15 years, and in the past year produced about $615,000 annually and oversaw about $72 million of client assets, he and another person familiar with his practice said.
The 57-year-old broker said recommendations from former colleagues who preceded him to Wells and his new employer’s willingness to hire his 29-year-old daughter, Heather, as an associate, motivated the move. UBS was not as open to the succession plan he was outlining, he said.
A spokesperson at UBS, which last summer led the wave of announcements by all wirehouses but Wells about curtailed recruiting of brokers, did not respond to a request for comment.
In other Wells Advisors’ moves, the firm’s Lake Oswego, Ore., private client office last week recruited Christopher Webb from Waddell & Reed. He managed around $48 million in assets, a Wells spokeswoman said.
Webb, who began his brokerage career with Waddell seven years ago, did not return a call for comment on his motivations or his production.
At the end of July, Mary W. Basili left her Edward Jones office in Edmonds, Wash. at the end of July, after 21 years with the firm, to join Wells’ private client group office in that city. Basili, who began her career at regional firm Murphey Favre in 1992, produced around $600,000, according to the Wells source. She managed around $86 million in assets, a Wells spokeswoman said.
Basili did not return a request for comment at her new office, which has 11 brokers, according to its .
Wells’ account-opening scandal, which broke into headlines last fall, has not left its wealth management business unscathed. Wells Fargo Advisors reported a net decline of 140 brokers at its private client group as of the end of the second quarter, and advisors say the headlines have generated steady questions from many customers.
To counteract its 3% decline in brokerage headcount since last September, Wells in May sweetened offers for new recruits. Although its publicized recruiting successes seem to have been with mid-level producers, the firm has been offering deals that can reach close to 300% of a brokers’ trailing-12 production, according to recruiters.
The Wells spokeswoman declined to comment on the firm’s recruiting record generally since the new deals have been offered.
“We’re not advertising all of our gets,” one internal recruiter said, speaking on condition of anonymity. “We’ve hired a lot of folks, but Wells takes a conservative approach and just doesn’t put it out there for the public to see.”