Bob Oros has wasted no time putting together a crack sales team comprising veterans largely from his former employers – Schwab Advisor Services and LPL Financial.
His most recent hire is Jim Collins, who served as a regional director of business development for LPL Financial of Boston and San Diego. In addition, Collins has held management posts with such companies as Schwab, Morgan Stanley and UBS Paine Webber. He joined TCoA on Tuesday and will cover the Midwest.
The new national sales manager of Trust Company of America also poached Jeffrey Speight and Kathleen Asack from Schwab to lead the sales efforts in the Central South and the Northeast respectively.
Both Speight and Asack worked for Fidelity Investments prior to joining San Francisco-based Schwab. They came aboard at TCoA in January and December respectively.
Oros also hired Melissa Gaustad for Minnesota, Wisconsin and the Dakotas; she was responsible for the LPL Financial at New York Life Insurance Co. She has been on board since October.
TCoA has two additional sales people in the Southeast and Mountain states. It is interviewing candidates for its Western territory.
Trust Company of America, with about $9.5 billion of assets, is among the fastest-growing assets custodians. Based in Denver, Colo., it distinguishes itself by being a small custodian with some very big clients — some with billions of dollars of assets. It attracts them by providing software that makes trading in model portfolios cheap and efficient. See: How a small RIA custodian is making big waves.
Oros, hired by Trust in October from LPL, is a former sales managerial star in RIA custody for Schwab but says that neither Asack nor Speight worked directly for him while he was there. See: How Bob Oros landed at Trust Company of America.
Oros concedes that hiring talent to lesser-known Trust Company of America is a different process than the one he employed at Schwab. For instance, he never felt compelled to explain to the candidate the company’s technology because they assumed it was sound. Now he does.
“These people were working big-box brands,” he says.
Speight says he is pleased about his move from Schwab to Trust Company of America.
“I am humbled by the positive response I have gotten from advisor prospects in the community this past month. The ones I’ve spoken with acknowledge that bigger isn’t always better and it’s not necessarily a good thing to be all things to all people….It’s hard to leave a firm after ten years when you have made so many friends. Notwithstanding, what I’ve seen and experienced so far in the past month has given me confirmation that my decision to join Trust was the right move.”
The key is showing the advisors Trust’s unique technology that makes simple the process of managing multiple managed portfolios
This capability has helped drive Trust’s growth to a level that captures the imagination of prospective salespeople.
“I would characterize the reaction of RIAs in my marketplace to be one of curiosity and welcomed change,” Asack says.
Trust’s assets in custody are about $9.5 billion, up from $7.1 billion at the start of 2009. The company’s total RIA assets in custody at the end of the first quarter of 2005 were just $2.3 billion.
That means that Trust has enjoyed a 35.7% compounded annual growth rate for four years, even accounting for the collapse in late 2008.
Fast growth aside, breaking through with a lesser-known brand takes a patient approach, according to Gaustad.
“Initially RIAs compare us to what is “known” – very large, retail-focused, transaction-fee driven custodians who have high brand recognition. Once they hear our story and understand what we have been developing for RIAs for over 20 years they want to know more.”