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Raymond James unveils new employment model to spur UK growth

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Raymond James has launched a brand-new business model, available to wealth managers across the UK, in what is thought to be a first for the UK wealth management sector.

The new Employee Affiliation Model invites wealth managers to join the firm as employees, with all of the security and support that affords, while crucially retaining two important freedoms rarely offered elsewhere. This includes the freedom to build their own book of clients entirely free of restrictive covenants, and complete autonomy over their investment proposition and the tailored advice they offer to clients.

Both of these features have been a mainstay of Raymond James’ independent branch business model since the firm launched in the UK 20 years ago. The model became popular with entrepreneurially minded wealth managers who wanted autonomy over their investment decisions and to put their clients at the heart of their business.

The launch marks the first time wealth managers will be able to do so as full employees, while still preserving the freedom to take clients with them should they ever choose to leave.

The unique model, which has proved increasingly successful for Raymond James in the US over the past 60 years, will be the fourth affiliation option available for wealth managers joining the business in the UK. The three other models are Independent Contracting, Professional Partner and the Investment Management Platform. In the first two models wealth managers are all commercially independent and own their own business, while in the third Raymond James provides an Investment Management Platform for firms

Anthony Scott, Head of Business Development at Raymond James, says: “Every wealth manager joining us at Raymond James comes through the doors with their own vision of success for their clients, their teams and themselves, and our primary goal is to help them along the path to achieving those goals. That autonomy has always been a central part of our culture at Raymond James, which is why it’s so exciting to be able to offer it within the framework of a more traditional employment model. Employees will be able to manage their own clients and investments in the way that they choose, backed by one of the largest financial services firms in the world.

“Since we first launched in the UK 20 years ago, we have grown our market share year-on-year, and this is yet another sign of our ongoing commitment to the UK market. We hope this new model will provide another attractive avenue for wealth managers interested in joining one of the UK’s fastest growing investment management firms.”

The first employee utilising this model, which will be available to both new and existing Raymond James wealth managers, is Simon Monk, who opened a new branch at Ropemaker Place in London last year.

Simon Monk, wealth manager, says: “Initially one of the main attractions of Raymond James was the prospect of building my business whilst retaining client ownership and control in the way those clients are serviced and the bespoke manner in which their investments are managed. This offering is not diminished in any way as an employee of Raymond James – in fact it is reassuring to know that I have the backing of one of the world’s largest wealth management organisations with over $1tn of assets under management*.

“Since joining Raymond James in 2020, I have been very impressed by the level of support I have received from all members of the company, where their focus is very much upon the client and enhancing their experiences, and this is the culture running throughout the firm. This culture and high levels of service make it a very compelling proposition for clients to entrust their investments to Raymond James.”

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