Rockefeller Hires Merrill Manager in Los Angeles
Continuing its strategy of recruiting veteran wirehouse managers to expand its nascent wealth management franchise, Rockefeller Capital Management said Thursday that it has hired a longtime Merrill Lynch complex manager in Los Angeles to build its first office in the city.
Led by former Merrill and Morgan Stanley senior executive Greg Fleming, a recapitalized Rockefeller has drawn primarily from those firms to build the wealth operation.
It hired former Merrill Pacific Northwest regional manager Chris Dupuy as chief operating officer last summer. Former Merrill manager Anthony Grosso, who opened a San Francisco office for Rockefeller in December, last month recruited a $4-million team of two advisers from UBS Wealth Management. The company has recruited eight teams of million-dollar producers since last summer.
“With more than 30 years of industry experience and strong ties to the Los Angeles community, [Crair] is ideally suited to lead Rockefeller’s expansion in southern California,” Chris Randazzo, president of private wealth management at Rockefeller, said in a prepared statement. Fleming recruited Randazzo, who was chief information officer for Morgan Stanley’s wealth and investment management units, last year.
Crair, who began his career as a registered rep in 1981 and has been with Merrill for the last 14 years, could not be reached for comment. He oversaw 220 advisors managing $30 billion in client assets in Merrill offices in Santa Monica, Manhattan Beach, Century City and Beverly Hills, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Merrill has redefined the role of its managers in recent years, rewarding them for growing productivity among existing advisers and weaning them from active recruiting from competitors. Andy Sieg, president of Merrill Wealth, said this week that the firm’s freeze on “competitive recruiting” is continuing. That has prompted some veterans to leave and created vacancies at management desks nationwide.
A spokeswoman for Merrill did not return a request for comment on Crair’s departure.