/* */

OnWallStreet’s Lori Konish reported on March 22, that 600 Morgan Stanley financial advisors were offered retention incentives to remain with Raymond James after the acquisition two months ago. Of those, 98% have agreed to stay, a pleasant surprise as noted by COO Dennis Zank of Raymond James. [pullquote]…they eliminated a lot of the apprehension and fear factor[/pullquote]

Both management teams were confident that the Morgan Stanley/Raymond James cultures were compatible and that retention would be high.

Of course, not all the 1,000 plus advisors were offered the deal. Trainees and those advisors who recently joined Morgan Stanley and are still under a transition package were exempt from the offer.

Much of the success of retention was due to Raymond James’ proactive engagement with the advisors shortly after the acquisition was announced. By meeting with the advisors and outlining a timeline of what they could expect and when, they eliminated a lot of the apprehension and fear factor.

Management retention has also been high with 12 Morgan Stanley top executives expected to stay. Finalization of the acquisition is slated for April 2.