RW Baird office

Baird to Acquire Hilliard Lyons

Baird’s acquisition of fellow Louisville brokerage Hilliard Lyons would bring its advisor head count to nearly 1,300.

Baird announced plans today to acquire regional wealth management firm Hilliard Lyons and its trust company, adding more than 380 financial advisors to its platform. The deal would bring Baird’s advisor count to nearly 1,300 and client assets to $250 billion. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Hilliard Lyons, which offers wealth management, trust and estate planning services, investment banking, municipal finance and asset management, reported more than $280 million in revenue as of Sept. 30. One of the oldest investment firms in the U.S., Hilliard Lyons was first established in 1854. It now has more than 70 offices in 11 states. Meanwhile, Baird, established in 1919, has some 97 offices in 30 states. Both firms are based in Louisville, Ky.

In 1998, PNC Bank bought Hilliard Lyons, and sold the firm to Houchens Industries in Bowling Green, Ky., in early 2008. Baird is an employee-owned firm.

“We are especially pleased to return to our roots and rejoin an employee-owned firm,” said Jim Allen, chairman and CEO of Hilliard Lyons.

The deal is expected to close in the second half of next year, at which time Allen will transition to vice chairman of Baird and a member of its executive committee. Hilliard Lyons President Tom Kessinger III will serve as a leader in the private wealth management division, while continuing to serve his clients. Alan Newman, Hilliard’s director of private wealth, will also serve in a private wealth management leadership role.

Hilliard Lyons recently rebranded, doing away with its old logo, a bull and bear holding a tickertape, first introduced in 1973. It was replaced with one that incorporates “a golden pathway and a bold, modern typeface,” according to a company statement from March of this year.

The firm also joined the Protocol for Broker Recruiting in March.

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