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How This Ex-LPL Exec Helped Cetera Add $5.3 Billion

By Alex Padalka February 4, 2019

Cetera Financial Group recruited more than 800 financial advisors in 2018, which the firm attributes in part to an executive it poached in the middle of the year from archrival LPL Financial.

The new recruits brought $5.3 billion in assets under administration, and Cetera saw record results in the fourth quarter in particular, the company says in a press release.

“The results are partly attributed to Cetera’s revamped recruiting team, which it grew in 2018 under a new leader, Mike Murray,” the company says.

Murray came to Cetera to oversee new business development in May, after 16 years at LPL as national sales manager for the West division.

Murray says in the press release that Cetera has had an “exceptional” response from advisors to its new pricing structure as well as to the new business development team.

Going into 2019, the company is working with AdvisorNet, BAR Financial, Horizon Wealth Management and Carson on new “cooperative marketing and sales strategies,” Cetera says in the press release. The initiative includes training, education, performance marketing and sales enablement, according to the press release.

LPL and Cetera have been battling for each other’s advisors and executives for some time now, particularly since LPL began offering an especially generous signing bonus to advisors at Cetera, Securities America and Kestra last year.

Since October, the company has poached several Cetera advisors collectively overseeing at least $4 billion.

During the same period, Cetera appears to have poached just two LPL advisors and didn’t disclose their assets under management. But Cetera has done well on the executive front: In addition to Murray, the company hired Brian Neyland from LPL last year. Neyland was overseeing close to 100 advisors collectively overseeing more than $3 billion.