RIA Rising

Post-Krawcheck, an RIA recruiter of Merrill teams is busy

HighTower Advisors in Chicago has recruited four former Merrill Lynch teams to its ranks so far this year, bringing about $2.5 billion in assets, says Mike Papedis, the managing director who leads business recruitment at the registered investment advisor. The firm targets wirehouse teams with assets of $400 million and up.

So what kind of day did Papedis have today, following last night’s announcement that Merrill’s top executive, Sallie Krawcheck, has been dismissed as part of a reorganization at parent Bank of America?

“Very busy,” Papedis said today, without elaborating. “We’ve been enjoying a lot of accelerated conversations.”

Papedis isn’t the kind of guy to crow over the misfortunes of competitors. But he did say that wirehouse advisors have been looking at alternatives to staying within their channel. Some of the news involving Bank of America in recent weeks, including its stock tumble and its efforts to cut costs and raise capital, are boosting interest, he says.

“Instead of dipping a toe in the water…they’ve jumped into the pool,” he said. “We’re going to have a busy fall.”

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