Million-Dollar Merrill Up-and-Comer Shifts to Alex. Brown
An up-and-comer on a North Carolina-based Merrill Lynch team has split off on his own to join Raymond James Financial’s Alex. Brown.
The 32-year-old had been generating around $1 million in annual revenue and oversaw $130 million in assets for wealthy individuals, including a number of professional athletes, according to two sources familiar with the move.
Taylor moved along with a client associate, Keaton Riddle, but the remaining four members of his former team, including the senior producing manager, John C. Setzer, remain at Merrill Lynch.
The entire team oversaw $368 million in client assets in 2019, according to Forbes, which ranked Taylor #21 on its top “Next Gen Best-in-State” list that year.
Reached at his Winston-Salem outpost, Taylor confirmed the move but declined to comment further saying he did not have Raymond James’ approval. He reports to Alex. Brown regional manager Robert Quick.
“Will represents the future of the business and will bring great new energy to our office,” Quick said in an emailed statement. “I look forward to witnessing Will’s explosive growth over the next few years and am excited for his future at Alex. Brown.”
Neither Setzer nor a Merrill spokeswoman returned a call for comment. Merrill Lynch has frozen veteran broker recruiting in favor of promoting internal growth and training and hiring novice advisors with around 10 years of experience.
Raymond James meanwhile has upped its recruiting offers across its core employee channel and the Alex. Brown unit in recent months to as much as 240% of trailing-12 production at the high end from closer to 160%, executives said in a call last month with industry headhunters.
The Alex. Brown division, led by Haig Ariyan, generally works with sophisticated high-net-worth clients and has been a relatively slow grower relative to the core employee channel since Raymond James acquired the Alex. Brown unit from Deutsche Bank four years ago. The unit, which has around 200 brokers, issued announcements for just two new teams last year.