Ameriprise’s grab from indie and wirehouse rivals: 13 advisors, $761M

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Ameriprise added more than a dozen advisors in a series of recruiting grabs from LPL Financial, Advisor Group's FSC Securities and Merrill Lynch.

These advisors, who bring $661 million in client assets to the franchise channel and $100 million to the employee channel, are the latest surge in the recruiting results of Minneapolis-based Ameriprise.

The company's total head count expanded by a net 43 advisors year-over-year to 9,933 in the third quarter, with total client assets in the retail and wealth management segment growing by 9% to $588 billion.

Dale Cebert moved to Ameriprise’s independent channel from FSC Securities in The Villages, Florida. He’s been independent for 29 years, with a one-year stint on the employee-side at Morgan Stanley, according to FINRA BrokerCheck.

That one year was problematic.

Cebert is one of the few brokers to clear his name after being terminated from a firm after what he called “a very bumpy transition.”

Morgan Stanley claimed it fired Cebert because of customer complaints, regulatory action and engaging in improper outside business activities. Cebert's client's later testified that Morgan Stanley compared him to Bernie Madoff in conversations with his clients after he was let go, Cebert has said. But FINRA ended up awarding Cebert $2.5 million in a defamation claim against Morgan Stanley.

Now Cebert and five brokers have joined the independent channel of Ameriprise. Joining him are Chad Noble, Mark Dickerson, Alec Thomas, Scott Maxwell and Keriann Mitchell. Together they managed $444 million in client assets at FSC Securities.

A spokesman at FSC Securities declined to comment on the departure.

“With all the consolidation going on in the industry, we wanted a partner that has the resources and vision to help us excel now and in the future," Cebert said in a statement.

The other independent team to join Ameriprise came from LPL Financial.

Bill Pickles, who has been with LPL for 11 years, recently moved over to Ameriprise’s independent channel along with his brother, Michael Pickles, and three other advisors.

Joining them are Brad Berger, JB Wilson and Andy Vernon, according to the firm. Together they manage $217 million in client assets, according to Ameriprise.

The team operates out of Tacoma, Washington.

A spokeswoman at LPL did not respond to a request for comment.

Additionally, Ameriprise recently hired a team on its employee side.

Neil Abney and his daughter, Trisha Abney, are joining the firm in Louisville, Kentucky, from Merrill Lynch, where they managed approximately $100 million in client assets.

"We looked long and hard at several firms and Ameriprise came out on top." Neil Abney said.

Neil Abney spent nine years at Merrill Lynch. Prior to that, he was at A.G. Edwards, according to FINRA BrokerCheck, and later Wells Fargo when it acquired A.G. Edwards in 2008. Trisha Abney was at Merrill Lynch for three years prior to the move.

A spokeswoman at Merrill Lynch did not respond to a request for comment.

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Recruiting Career moves Independent advisors Regional BDs Ameriprise LPL Financial FSC Securities