And the Courting of Morgan Keegan Begins…

And the Courting of Morgan Keegan Begins…

Raymond James will likely pull out all the stops to keep Morgan Keegan reps, much like Downton Abbey's reception.

Being knee-deep in the February issue of Registered Rep., I failed to update my blog last week that the rumors about Raymond James purchasing Morgan Keegan have been substantiated. Now, of course, the real priority for Raymond James, and what will make the deal profitable long term, is the retention of Morgan Keegan advisors. The courting, as I would call it, began today.

Raymond James hosted more than 80 Morgan Keegan branch managers and administrative staff at its St. Petersburg, Fla., headquarters, the goal of which was to “warmly welcome the Morgan Keegan managers to the firm;” “demonstrate how similar the two firms are in terms of their culture, shared values and focus on clients and associates;” and “illustrate how important people will be to the success of the merger,” among others.

The whole process and the reception by Morgan Keegan reminded me of PBS’s Downton Abbey, a British period piece series documenting a wealthy family in the early 1900s and the lives of their servants. (The show just recently snagged a Golden Globe for best miniseries.) In any case, (spoiler alert) throughout the show, the family hosts numerous potential suitors for their eldest daughter Mary, wining, dining, and entertaining the young men in any possible way they can. And it’s extremely obvious. And it’s often about the money—how much can the man provide their daughter.

Raymond James will have to wine and dine Morgan Keegan reps much in the same way, and it’s already obvious. And for many reps, it’ll also be about the money, meaning how robust will the retention package be... Will the courting work? Besides money, what other factors will attract Morgan Keegan reps?

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