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Andrew Marsh spent almost 20 years in executive leadership roles at Richardson.Philip Cheung/The Globe and Mail

Former Richardson Wealth Ltd. chief executive Andrew Marsh has been appointed to the board of rival Wellington-Altus Financial Inc., an independent wealth manager with about $28-billion in assets.

Wellington-Altus founder and chief executive Shaun Hauser said Mr. Marsh will join the board as of Jan. 1.

Mr. Marsh spent almost 20 years in executive leadership roles at Richardson, a subsidiary of RF Capital Group Inc. and a major competitor of Wellington-Altus in Canada’s financial services industry. During his time leading Richardson, Mr. Marsh grew the company to 160 investment advisers who managed about $30-billion in assets. He retired in 2021.

Now, he will be stepping into a leadership coaching role and working directly with Mr. Hauser and the executive committee at Wellington-Altus.

“I am very proud of what my team and I built at Richardson and I continue to think it’s a great firm, with great potential and great people,” Mr. Marsh said. “But my next step in my career isn’t about sharing my Rolodex. It is about having a positive impact on an executive team – like Shaun’s – by providing strategic mentoring and coaching to leaders.”

Earlier this year, Mr. Marsh was named vice-chair of Florida-based Dynasty Financial Partners, a technology services provider to more than 50 registered investment advisory companies. RIA companies typically follow independent business models and are not parts of larger brokerages or banks.

Mr. Marsh first joined Dynasty in April as an executive-in-residence. He worked in the company’s “adviser to CEO” program, where he helped coach registered investment advisers who had transitioned into being chief executives.

Richardson Wealth Inc. loses senior advisers to rival wealth managers

Mr. Marsh started his career in financial services as an adviser in 1990. In 2004, he helped launch GMP Private Client at the age of 36. In 2009, he oversaw the merger of GMP Private Client with Richardson Partners Financial, and was later appointed CEO of the newly formed Richardson GMP.

His retirement came five months after he completed a three-year restructuring deal to split the privately owned investment advisory firm from its capital markets division, GMP Capital, and launch an independent publicly traded wealth manager.

His background as an adviser who moved into a leadership role in the independent wealth industry is what caught the eye of executives at Wellington-Altus, Mr. Hauser said.

“It is rare to find someone with that kind of experience in the independent space, and it provides me a tremendous peace of mind to know that somebody has walked in my shoes and can provide me advice and expertise in that area,” Mr. Hauser added.

Wellington-Altus, launched in 2017 by Mr. Hauser and industry veteran Charlie Spiring, has been boosting its assets through aggressive recruitment. In early 2020, the company announced it had hit $10-billion in assets, several months ahead of schedule and just prior to the start of the pandemic. The company now sits at about $28-billion, with a new goal of hitting $50-billion in “several years,” Mr. Hauser said.

“This is going to be our second-best year of recruiting since inception – just under $5-billion in assets,” he added.

“Andrew’s decades of industry experience, and his expertise across international financial markets, will help ascend Wellington-Altus to new heights as we confidently set our sights on our new medium-term goal.”

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