- Chilton Trust, a wealth management firm managing about $5 billion in assets, wants to meaningfully grow its adviser headcount over the next two years.
- Pepper Anderson, who joined Chilton Trust as CEO in July from JPMorgan Private Bank, spoke with Business Insider at the firm’s New York office about her growth plans.
- "I’d like to add to some of our front line to help us tell our story, to help us advise clients in their hometowns," Anderson said.
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Chilton Trust’s new chief executive, Pepper Anderson, has ambitious plans — she wants to double the adviser headcount at each of the 70-person wealth management firm’s four main offices in two years.
Anderson joined Chilton Trust, which serves 110 families and manages $5 billion in assets, as CEO in July after 22 years at JPMorgan Private Bank, where she was most recently managing director and market manager for Connecticut and Westchester County, New York.
"My first agenda has really been on the recruiting side, because we are a thin firm, and the majority of resources here are devoted to serving clients," Anderson said in an interview at Chilton Trust’s New York office, adding her initial plans are "a little bit optimistic."
Her ambitions for Chilton Trust, a subsidiary of the investment management firm Chilton Investment Company, come as many banks and other firms are looking to build out services for the wealthy as well as the so-called mass affluent in search of steady advisory fees. That includes Anderson’s former employer.
JPMorgan’s private bank, which caters to high- and ultra-high-net worth clients, is looking to grow its coverage of family offices in the U.S. and globally, according to the JPMorgan’s 2018 annual report. It had private bank assets under management of $617 billion in the second quarter, according to filings, up from $551 billion the same quarter a year before.
Independent, privately owned Chilton Trust plans to hire in the four main offices — in Palm Beach, Florida, where the firm is based, in Charlotte, North Carolina, in New York, which is its largest office, and in Connecticut. Chilton Trust also has an office in Wilmington, Delaware.
"I’d like to add to some of our front line to help us tell our story, to help us advise clients in their hometowns," Anderson said.
But the firm is not interested in hiring advisers just looking for the next best thing.
"There is a well-entrenched flow of people who move their shingle every few years to a different wirehouse, and it works for them, and those firms, and their business plan. That won’t be what works for us," Anderson said, referring to full-service broker-dealers.
She noted that Chilton Trust does not have high client turnover, and that she does not want to have high staff turnover, either. The firm did not disclose its total number of advisers.
"That’s a harder thing to do in this day and age, is to have people work with each other for a long period of time, but it is the goal."
Chilton Trust is far from alone among smaller firms wanting to grow the business of giving the ultra-wealthy advice.
For one, New York-based Rockefeller Capital Management, headed by former Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch exec Greg Fleming, is eyeing ultra-high-net-worth clients and said in October that it wanted to increase assets to more than $100 billion from $18.6 billion at the time.
And in July, Rockefeller Capital Management’s wealth management head said the firm is looking to grow to more than 200 advisers from 30.
Chilton Trust has already touted two hires that have joined the firm this year.
In in June it brought on Kenneth Montgomery, former managing director and private client adviser at US Trust, Bank of America’s private bank. It also hired former Evercore Wealth Management vice president and financial adviser Tom Trenchard. Prior to his time at Evercore, Trenchard also served as a private client adviser with US Trust.
Chilton Trust named Montgomery a managing director supporting East Coast clients, and Trenchard a senior vice president focused on Florida and Connecticut.
Bank of America’s private bank had total client balances of $458 billion at the end of the second quarter, and CEO Brian Moynihan said in that quarter’s earnings call that the private bank has been adding sales team members. (Bank of America earlier this year rebranded US Trust, which it bought from Charles Schwab in 2007, as Bank of America Private Bank.)
Evercore said in its 2018 annual report it is investing at a "measured pace" in its US wealth management, which it sees as a complement to its investment banking business and a way to grow its client network. It had $8.3 billion in wealth assets under management as of June 30.
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