(January 4 – 17:30 ET) – Raymond James Financial has completed its acquisition of Vancouver’s Goepel McDermid Inc. for US$48 million in cash and 1 million common shares.

In addition to the purchase price, Raymond James also created a US$12 million retention pool for key staff. The firm said about 30% of the purchase price will be deferred for 24 months, though. Goepel will change its name to Raymond James Ltd. later this month.

“We are very pleased to expand our capital markets activities in Canada and our overall retail distribution network through this acquisition,” says Thomas James, chairman of the Raymond James Financial board and CEO.

Ken Shields, president and CEO of Goepel, says, “Our private clients will also have access to a wider range of U.S. investments, while our investment advisors will benefit from improved financial planning support. The relationship will also provide a significant advantage for private investors in Canada who are seeking the independent investment dealer alternative for wealth management services.”

“Our firms are remarkably similar. We share a dedication to personalized client service and are both firmly committed to the autonomy of our people,” he says.

There will be some immediate cooperative efforts in capital markets, but, for the most part, the firms will continue to operate independently.

Raymond James Financial will ask shareholders to approve a plan to increase its board to 15 people, adding Goepel president and CEO Ken Shields and Hardwick Simmons, recently appointed CEO of Nasdaq, to its board. Simmons’ appointment assumes that there’s no conflict between his new job at Nasdaq and a board position with RJF.

Shields, 52, has headed Goepel since 1996. He is a past chairman of the Investment Dealers Association, a director of TimberWest Forest Corp. and a member of the Canadian Accounting Standards Oversight Council.

Prior to joining Nasdaq, Simmons was president and CEO of Prudential Securities Inc., and has been president of Private Client Group at Shearson Lehman Brother Inc. He is also a past chairman of the U.S. Securities Industry Association, a director of the New York City Partnership and Chamber of Commerce Inc.

The new Raymond James Ltd. has approximately 250 advisors in 22 branches across Canada.
-IE Staff