Hilliard Lyons

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Oct 22, 2008 6:27 am

It appears they are not publicly traded and the comp plan is pretty up there. I've only heard about them in passing. Anyone work there that could fill me in?

Oct 22, 2008 7:01 am
Paper or Plastic?
PNC's sale of Hilliard Lyons completed

PNC Financial Services Group Inc. has closed
on its sale of Louisville-based brokerage firm J.J.B. Hilliard, W.L.
Lyons Inc. to a new company owned by Hilliard employees and Bowling
Green, Ky.-based Houchens Industries Inc.

The sale price was not disclosed.

The new company is named HL Financial Services LLC, according to a
news release. Hilliard Lyons will retain its name, employees and
management team and will remain based in Louisville.

Pittsburgh-based PNC (NYSE:PNC) had owned Hilliard Lyons since
1998. The brokerage firm has more than 1,000 employees at 76 branches.
Of those, about 400 are located at the company's corporate
headquarters, and more than 100 employees are at three branch offices
in Louisville.

Hilliard's operations are located in Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois,
Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina, Ohio, South
Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia.

Houchens Industries, founded in 1917, is a diversified company with about 12,000 employees.

The company runs about 150 grocery stores under the Houchens, Food
Giant, IGA, Piggly Wiggly and Mad Butcher brands and more than 220
stores under the Save-A-Lot discount grocery store brand.

Oct 22, 2008 7:28 am

Working for a privately held company would seem to be a perk these days. If anyone has/does work there any has some insight, I would appreciate it.

Oct 22, 2008 8:54 am

Moved from AGE/WS last September and couldn't be more pleased. Apparently was not the only FC attracted to the firm, we've tranferred 30 brokers this year and have approximately 100 in negotiations currently. PM me if you want the skinny.

Oct 22, 2008 9:22 am

Regarding Hilliard Lyons.  The one concern that anybody should
have is the fact that they're one of the few independent B/D
left.  The grocery store chain that put up a lot of the money to
help the LBO to buy it back from PNC is linked to the firm in several
ways--all of which appear to be matters of convenience as much as
anything.



The brand is highly regarded in its geography--they have attempted to
open branches in areas away from their "Natural Market" only to close
them within a year or two.



The problems with PNC had to do with Hilliard's management team not
wanting to leave Louisville--which is a superb place to live and raise
a family.   When the LBO was suggested to PNC it was accepted
because PNC never felt comfortable with the arrangements.



That said Hilliard is always in play.  For years Stifel and
Hilliard have talked with each other.  They've come very close to
the altar on several occasions--but the senior leadership at both firms
has changed since the last serious discussions and the current teams do
not seem to be interested in each other.  Stifel may be more
interested in moving south and west rather than north and east.



People working for any of the relatively few remaining regional firms
should not be surprised if you end up involved in a merger of two small
firms making an attempt to build a more tasty morsel for a bank to buy.



From your perspective these events should not be that big a deal. 
Transitions are generally pretty smooth and the newly created larger
firm will be able to do more for you and your clients.



The reality is there's nowhere to hide any longer--when "Mother Merrill" can disappear overnight anything can happen.



Up to, and including, the entire concept of financial product sales
simply disappearing as the banks also end up buying the fund companies
and turning everything into a no load fund.

Oct 22, 2008 10:26 am

Had some friends who worked for Hilliard and really like them until PNC came in and effed things up. The bank first asked then enforced a policy forcing these guys to give up their million dollar plus clients to the bank's wealth management unit. The idea was that the wealth management unit would compensate the brokers with an equal asset dollar value of sub million dollar clients. Of course that never happened and my friends, rather than give up more assets, left for another B/d. Other brokers in the office weren't far behind. The bank also added layers of unnecessary and ineffective management. The Hilliard/PNC branch in Cherry Hill NJ was left with a regional manager, a recruiting manager, and their support staff. They hung on for almost two years with no FAs before PNC closed the office.

 
If Hilliard can return to its pre PNC ways, good firm!
Oct 22, 2008 8:17 pm

A bank messing up a good retail brokerage, where have I seen that lately? Oh yeah, when I go to work every day!  I think that smaller b/d's with under 1000 reps probably get gobbled up at some point. It would be nice to be proactive verus reactive when it comes to who you hook up with. Kind of funny that Piggly Wiggly is under the same umbrella as Hilliard.

Oct 22, 2008 8:22 pm
Gordon Gekko:

A bank messing up a good retail brokerage, where
have I seen that lately? Oh yeah, when I go to work every day!  I
think that smaller b/d's with under 1000 reps probably get gobbled up
at some point. It would be nice to be proactive verus reactive when it
comes to who you hook up with. Kind of funny that Piggly Wiggly is
under the same umbrella as Hilliard.





As I said, that grocery store relationship is very incestuous.  I
can't recall the exact linkage, but it's not an arms length deal by any
means.

Oct 22, 2008 8:24 pm

I'll take it as a funny marriage until someone with inside experience can tell me why it sucks. On the surface, I would rather be privately held and matched up with anything versus getting bought out by a company that lost 90% of its value and all of its goodwill in a year.

Oct 22, 2008 9:05 pm
Gordon Gekko:

I'll take it as a funny marriage until someone with inside experience can tell me why it sucks. On the surface, I would rather be privately held and matched up with anything versus getting bought out by a company that lost 90% of its value and all of its goodwill in a year.

Then look at Janney Montgomery Scott...great pkg and they are owned by Penn Life...a mutual co.
Oct 23, 2008 7:05 am

Just looked them up and they are in my town. Any major negatives other than being small (which I don't see as a negative but Bob Bagby knew better)?

Oct 23, 2008 12:17 pm
shredder:
Then look at Janney Montgomery Scott...great pkg and they are owned by Penn Life...a mutual co.
 
JMS is,at best, a mediocre small firm with a serious identity crisis.
 
Oct 23, 2008 12:59 pm
BondGuy:
shredder:
Then look at Janney Montgomery Scott...great pkg and they are owned by Penn Life...a mutual co.
 
JMS is,at best, a mediocre small firm with a serious identity crisis.
 



The same as they were about 10 years ago...

Oct 24, 2008 7:49 am

I spoke with them, seems like a good firm if you don't mind working for a smaller firm. Personally, I transferred from a massive state school after 1 year to attend a smaller state school that was more to my liking. Same might apply to the brokerage biz. If anyone has any negatives on the firm please dish! Size and possible takeout candidate are always there I know.

Oct 24, 2008 11:12 am

Gordon- Wrong!

 
JMS is not a happy place. If you want small firm feel with all the bells and whistles look at RBC.
Oct 24, 2008 11:23 am
BondGuy:

Gordon- Wrong!

 
JMS is not a happy place. If you want small firm feel with all the bells and whistles look at RBC.
 
My lasting impression of JMS is that it was a dumping ground for the washouts from our firm in the SE PA area.
 
It was run by a guy named Wolatarski (Sp?) who was a really good guy at NASD meetings, but having a good guy at the top of the pyramid doesn't mean that the culture of the place can develop.
 
Yesterday somebody commented that they have an "identity crisis" which is a very good analogy.  For example, their website is JMSOnline.com which send, to me at least, the impression that they're a variation of E*Trade rather than a bricks and mortar shop with branch offices.
 
The suggestion of  RBC is an excellent idea.  Several acquisitions over the year give the impression of a small localized firm--Dain and Centura both come to mind and I'm almost positive there are others--but with the financial support of a bank.
 
It's Different Now.
Oct 24, 2008 12:50 pm

Bond Guy, I meant to say that Hilliard seemed happy, not Janney. It seems that Hilliard is so small that nobody even has an impression of them. In regards to Janney, most of what I hear in negative so not knowing anyone there, that doesn't sit too well.