Industry veterans Charlie Spiring and Todd Degelman are leaving Montreal-based National Bank Financial Ltd. (NBF) to open up a new independent securities dealer.

Details of the deal, including the name of the future firm, have yet to be finalized, but the new dealer, which will be licensed by the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC), will be opening its doors later this year. The fledging firm will start out with about 13 employees from the Degelman-Spiring team and have roughly $1 billion in assets under management (AUM).

Opening up a new shop is nothing new to Spiring, who founded Wellington West Holdings Inc. in 1993 and eventually sold the dealer to NBF in 2011. Even though many IIROC-licensed dealers are closing their doors, Spiring feels that his previous experience and the business he has built within NBF will not only be successful but poised for growth.

“I just have a passion for the business,” says Spiring. “I built a business model that makes perfect sense in terms of where the business is going and changing and we have no doubt we can be profitable and no doubt we can be successful.”

Although NBF is losing a lucrative advisor team, the firm is supportive of this new venture and views it as a partnership between the bank and the new IIROC-licensed dealer. This partnership stems from the fact the new firm will make use of National Bank Correspondent Network (NBCN), the parent bank’s clearing house, along with other products and services that NBF offers.

“At the end of the day, we believe by doing this it’s going to be a win-win,” says Martin Lavigne, president of NBF’s wealth-management division. “It’s a great partnership and, at the end of the day, we’re betting on the exponential growth of the new firm.”

Spiring also intends to grow the new firm aggressively and will look to expand beyond the firm’s initial offices in Winnipeg and Saskatoon quickly.

“Our [immediate] goal is to go out and attract brokers from other firms and hopefully they’ll come and join us,” he says. “Our long-term goal is to build a national firm of independent brokers.”

Furthermore, both Spiring and Lavigne see opportunities for the two firms to refer potential recruits looking for the best home for their businesses.

“The reality is there’s a slimmer selection of people who are going to fit what I want and will want to come to us,” says Spiring. “But along the way, while we’re out there harvesting people, we’ll very likely be able to refer many people back to the mothership at NBF and help them in recruiting, so we will be working together. And [NBF] may find the same thing, that someone is very suited for an independent-minded model.”

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