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Advisor Moves: UBS Loses Veteran to Big Independent. Plus More Key Moves…

By Alex Padalka October 8, 2018

Raymond James has poached an experienced financial advisor from UBS, according to a press release from Raymond James.

James Melstrom, who oversees over $110 million, is joining Raymond James & Associates, the firm’s traditional employee broker-dealer, in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., according to the press release. He has been in the industry for more than 25 years and with UBS for close to a decade, Raymond James says.

“Raymond James helps empower their financial advisors,” Melstrom says in the press release. “I was very impressed by the infrastructure and marketing support they provide to allow advisors to grow their businesses. They are willing to invest in me to help me provide the kind of service my clients need.”

Oppenheimer Poaches Stifel Branch Manager

A branch manager with Stifel, Nicolaus & Co. has jumped ship to Oppenheimer & Co., according to a press release from Oppenheimer.

Christopher Lappas has been named branch manager at Oppenheimer’s Stamford, Conn., branch, according to the press release.

Before coming to Oppenheimer, he served as senior managing director and branch manager with Stifel as well as its broker-dealer business Sterne Agee and Leach, Oppenheimer says. During his 25 years in the financial services industry, Lappas also worked at Merrill Lynch, Snowden Capital Advisors and Citibank, according to the press release.

"Chris has a proven track record of leading, managing, and growing private client divisions with esteemed financial institutions," Mark Whaley, executive vice president and head of Oppenheimer’s private client division, says in the press release. "He has demonstrated an exceptional ability to guide financial advisors as they help clients with important financial decisions. We’re confident he’ll bring tremendous value to our firm by growing our Stamford branch and recruiting new top talent."

SA Stone Adds Two Wealth Management Practices

SA Stone Wealth Management Inc. has added two practices collectively managing $350 million, according to a press release from the company.

MAX Wealth Management, a division of Alabama-based MAX Credit Union, offers financial planning, insurance and retirement planning, overseeing $150 million, SA Stone Wealth says.

And Cooley & Labas Financial Advisors is an independent advice practice owned by financial planners Greg Cooley and Andrew Labas, who oversee $200 million, according to the press release.

Prior to joining SA Stone, Cooley and Labas were registered with Cetera Advisor Network for less than a year, before which they had been registered with Girard Securities, according to his BrokerCheck profile.

Atria Wealth Completes Acquisition of Cadaret, Grant & Co.

Atria Wealth Solutions — the firm owned by Morgan Stanley veteran Doug Ketterer — has completed the acquisition of Cadaret, Grant & Co. Inc., according to a press release from Atria.

Atria acquired 100% of Cadaret, Grant, an independent broker-dealer whose approximately 900 advisors oversee $23 billion, Atria says. It also acquired 100% stakes in Cadaret, Grant’s sister firms Cadaret Grant Agency Inc. and Capital Strategy Group Ltd., according to the press release. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“Acquiring Cadaret, Grant completes a critical stage in the execution of Atria’s strategy to be the premier service provider to independent financial advisors and financial institutions,” Ketterer, Atria’s CEO, says in the press release. “We are building a unique multi-channel business that focuses and caters to the specific needs of independent advisors, credit unions and banks. Building on Cadaret, Grant’s long history and unparalleled service model, Atria’s subsidiaries are now fully positioned to provide independent advisors with the most competitive set of tools and solutions that meet their ongoing demands in today’s rapidly changing wealth management environment.”