Jan 7 Raymond James Financial Inc has
bolstered its independent adviser footprint in Maryland with a
veteran duo that joined the broker-dealer from Wells Fargo & Co
After more than three decades in the brokerage industry,
adviser Carolyn Meakem and her daughter Traci Meakem Richmond
moved to Raymond James to open their own practice. The duo,
based just outside of Washington, D.C. in the Maryland suburb of
Bethesda, managed more than $200 million in client assets and
had $2 million in annual revenue production at Wells Fargo.
"We knew it was going to be a big investment and risk with
the transition, and we feel it's been well worth it to have our
clients feel better," said Richmond in an interview on Monday.
Richmond said a part of their decision to move was to break
away from the big bank-brokerage model, which was a point of
frustration for some of their clients who disliked the idea of
keeping their assets with a company that received government
"They were really glad to hear that Raymond James didn't
take TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program) money," she said.
"Clients just really don't like that."
Wells Fargo declined to comment on the departure.
The Meakem Group, as the advisers now call their independent
firm, joined Raymond James Financial Services Inc, the company's
independent broker-dealer division which caters to advisers who
also function as business owners. Richmond said the biggest
change has been the ease of access to senior management at
Raymond James, which is based in St. Petersburg, Florida.
"It couldn't have been easier to access the upper level and
that was the marked difference," she said.
And the move has already begun to pay off. Richmond said in
the roughly three months since they joined Raymond James, she
and her mom have already added two new clients who said they
decided to join as a result of their move.
Raymond James last year added at least 54 veteran advisers
who managed roughly $5.9 billion in client assets at their old
firms. More than half of those new recruits came from large
The company also has a traditional employee broker-dealer
division in the United States and smaller brokerage units in
Canada and Britain. Together with its broker-dealer
subsidiaries, Raymond James has more than 6,300 advisers
managing $389 billion in client assets.