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Rating:This Firm Has No Wholesaling Staff, and Loves It Not Rated 4.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Wednesday, January 15, 2014

This Firm Has No Wholesaling Staff, and Loves It

Reported by Tommy Fernandez

In this industry, it seems like everybody wants to hire more wholesalers. The idea being that more soldiers means a stronger a fund sales crusading army, which should mean more sales.

Hennessy Advisors takes a different approach to the issue of wholesaling. Namely, it has no traditional wholesaling force to speak of, and it's doing fine without it.

Brian Carlson, who was hired in December to serve as Hennessy's first head of distribution, explained the firm's thinking on the subject:

We have a distribution model that is not typical. Purposefully, we don't have a large wholesaling force.

We don't have a wholesaling force in a traditional sense. We have a national accounts manager, some internal wholesalers, and a very motivated and active marketing department.

One of the things that has occurred to me on more than one occasion here, we think a lot of advisors appreciate the fact that we don't have a wholesaling force stepping on their toes, dropping in unannounced.

Carlson told MFWire that "the independent and regional broker dealers are certainly going to be a key element of our success, as are the more local or regional RIA firms."

"I think Hennessy has got such a unique story, one where advisors in the local or regional independence broker dealers and investment advisors can present this story to their clientele," he said. "t makes the advisor unique. If an advisor at one of the firms can present Hennessy to their clients, it is not something from a big wirehouse shelf."

So, how do you reach out to advisors without an army of wholesalers? A judicious use of tech.

Carlson says that "we are on the forefront of marketing and electronic communications to advisors."

He described Hennessy's approach in this way:

This is a targeted market. There are no mass campaigns. We have a really robust technology service that allows us to track which advisors are receiving which communications.

We can make a calculated call out to these advisors and have a focused conversation. This is not just a cold call or marketing campaign. It is really a focused and calculated approach.

Carlson should know a thing or two about reaching out to advisors. He worked for a while under the storied Bill Chetney, president of LPL Financial Retirement Partners.

Regarding Hennessy, Carlson said "it is too early for me to decide whether we need a traditional wholesaling force. Hennessy has been very successful without one to date. We have been able to efficiently market and distribute the funds in a calculated manner. My primary focus will be to leverage and improve on what has been successful to date." 

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