Steward Partners Lands $3 Million Morgan Stanley Team

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A former Morgan Stanley team that generated $3 million in annual revenue has left to join Steward Partners Global Advisory, boosting the eight-month old independent firm's total recruited assets to more than $1 billion, according to the firm.

The recruits, brothers Kenneth and Erik Mathieson, managed about $315 million in client assets while at Morgan. Both have more than two decades of industry experience, and started their careers at Prudential Securities, according to FINRA records.

The brothers have opened Steward's first New York office, and its fourth since the firm was founded in November by several former Morgan Stanley managers. Steward's other offices are in Washington, D.C.; Andover, Mass.; and Portsmouth, N.H.

Steward CEO Michael Maurer says the firm is focused on the Northeast market because it wants partners to be near one another, and because they have familiarity with the region's markets. For example, Maurer was Morgan's complex manager in D.C. and Jim Gold, Steward's president, was a Morgan branch manager in Greenwich, Conn.

Maurer expects Steward Partners will benefit as more wirehouse advisors go independent because of increasing pressures to control costs at the firms, and because of continued culture clashes resulting from large mergers in recent years.

"Those are all things that are frustrating to lots of advisors. We think we're here at the right time," says Maurer. "We fit in a nice place in the market."

Steward is aiming for $12-$15 billion in assets and 60 advisors in the next five years. The firm currently has about 15 advisors.

Advisors who want the benefits independence, but don't want to get bogged down in the minutiae of running an entire office are perfect fit for Steward Partners, Maurer says.

"We built this predicated upon what do the type of advisors we're bringing in want. They're delegators. They don't want to change a light bulb, they don't want to bother with leases – they want to run their businesses. We listened and developed a model. It's not for everyone, but we've built the type of business that works for them," he says.

Last month the firm brought on an independent advisor team from RPG Family Wealth Advisory, which before going to that firm had been with Morgan Stanley. The team, led by advisors Travis Tucker, Donald Brusca and Stacy Bazylinski, managed about $120 million in assets and generated $1.3 million in annual revenue while at RPG.

"The people we're bringing in, if you look at how many firms they've been with, they've generally been with one firm for 20 or 30 years. They're not hoppers. That tells you that they have incredible client relations, and they're not doing it for the money," says Maurer. "We don't offer a wirehouse deal, but we do offer partnership and equity. And we make sure the chemistry is right for advisors."

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