What will a WFC/WB retention package look like?

445 replies [Last post]
Gordon Gekko's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-08

I would not want to be the one devising a retention plan for a bunch as diverse as the current WS. However, I am thinking something less that what they paid us AGE fc's last year. It would have to be, right? However, when you add the last package plus this package, we might be getting paid well to sit tight.
 
Watch there is no package...

Gordon Gekko's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-08

By the way, I don't know how the legal ramifications will work out but I am sure Wachovia shareholders want old Vikram to scram. One commentator on CNBC made the point that surely WB and WFC have a few contract attorneys that reviewed the Citi documents and felt they had grounds to proceed. At least that is what everyone other than C shareholders hope is the case.

shredder's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-06-04

WS - I have heard that the retention pkg, which was in the works PRIOR to the C/WFC deal will be "aggresive.

Jeroxide's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-10-04

I work in a large Wachovia office and there has been considerable talk over a proposed retention package in regards to the Wells Fargo acquisition.  One interesting point to keep in mind is that the Legacy AGE employees received a decent upfront (50% of trailing 12 for $500k level) whereas the Wachovia Securities brokers did receive a check to stay in their seats, but at a smaller amount.
 
So how do you handle individuals who received two different sized checks a year ago? 
 
Although I don't have any insight into what could transpire over a retention package, I can say that there has not been a time in my career that so many of my co-workers are actively pursuing deals with other firms (myself included).  Can anyone give me a sense of what the big players are paying upfront (cash) to move?
 
One note isthat the WFC retention package will have to be swift and meaningful.  If not, the WS brokerage will probably be cut in half.

Gordon Gekko's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-08

I am not a huge fc and I can probably get something approaching 100% TT elsewhere. I would prefer not to move so I will wait a little while for the dust to settle (I've used that term about 100 times with clients this week).
 
Ironic that WB employees are concerned about their job saftey and the WS fcs are worried about how much they'll get paid to stay seated. That obviously is not all we are worried about, but having a job is not really a concern right now.

rocky's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-09-17

this is an interesting time.  As someone who went to ML with a upfront package, I wonder too if they will give me a retention package.  My guess is they will not.   My other guess for my old age friends is that they may sweeten the pot, but not by as much as you would hope.  One thing for sure, we need to keep the communication alive for everyone to make wise decisions.
I am comfortable with ML, and I think Thain made a great call

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

They still have to complete the age/ws merger.

Jeroxide's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-10-04

It's Saturday afternoon and 23 of the brokers in our office got together for a "town meeting".   The general tone is that if there is not a substantial retention package, we are going to open an office across the street. 

I completely agree with the post above as a Legacy AGE, this has been a disaster to say the least.   The only anchor to keep me in my seat would be a hefty check.

Reggin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-09-03

Jeroxide wrote: It's Saturday afternoon and 23 of the brokers in our office got together for a "town meeting".   The general tone is that if there is not a substantial retention package, we are going to open an office across the street. 

I completely agree with the post above as a Legacy AGE, this has been a disaster to say the least.   The only anchor to keep me in my seat would be a hefty check.

I agree. Now that so much of the restricted stock has tanked, the golden handcuffs that top producers had are gone. I see lots of people taking recruiter calls and closed door meetings. Expect the people that were willing to wait and see what the Wachovia merger was about to move.

A quick and healthy package needs to come out immediately. Otherwise expect the flood gates to open in Nov and Dec.

It's not a great time to move a book, but they've given us no choice.

Morphius's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-21

Go_Long,You went on and on about how bad things are and how "the clients and the reps have about had it", yet your conclusion is "I would be very disappointed and surprised if there is not a retention package in the works."   Huh?How would a retention package improve one single thing you just railed against?  Either everything you are complaining about is important and needs to be fixed regardless of retention money, or it's not important and you're just whining.  You need to get clear in your own mind which it is, as your answer will make your future choices clearer. 

Morphius's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-21

Jeroxide wrote:It's Saturday afternoon and 23 of the brokers in our office got together for a "town meeting".   The general tone is that if there is not a substantial retention package, we are going to open an office across the street. 

I completely agree with the post above as a Legacy AGE, this has been a disaster to say the least.   The only anchor to keep me in my seat would be a hefty check.These sentiments are perfectly understandable and to be expected.  But watch yourselves carefully.  You walk out en masse and all open an office across the street and you better plan on some serious legal bills and challenges.  The more people that leave together the greater the likelihood of them coming after you for recruiting while still employed by WS, not to mention the usual non-solicit issue.  Regardless of the outcome, it would not be pleasant or cheap.So be careful.  Don't let your emotions run away with you.  Now is the time to keep your head about you.

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

It would be disappointing and surprising becuase I believe that managment knows what the advisors have been going through -- with likely more to come with a future merger. 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 

Jeroxide's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-10-04

Has anyone talked to Janney Montgomery Scott regarding an upfront bonus?  I'd be curious what some of the other top 15 firms are offering us to move.....

fritz's picture
Offline
Joined: 2006-01-11

Judgw just ruled against WFC/WB deal..Looks like it will not go through, or will tied up in courts for a long long time.  Maybe should not spend the retention $$ yet.

rocky's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-09-17

what a mess, does that mean Wells gets the brokerage, but the courts will decide on the banking side?

shredder's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-06-04

Jeroxide wrote:
Has anyone talked to Janney Montgomery Scott regarding an upfront bonus?  I'd be curious what some of the other top 15 firms are offering us to move.....
It's north of 100%.

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

Do you really think that the Citi deal in its present form will get shareholder approval? No way.
 
 

Reggin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-09-03

Go_Long wrote: Do you really think that the Citi deal in its present form will get shareholder approval? No way.
 
 

Nope. Not when shareholders know there was another deal for 7 times that. Citi will have to up the ante now. I also find it hard to believe that a smart company like Wells would put up a bid knowing the exclusivity agreement was in place without having a plan. An injunction like this was EASY to get, they had to know this in advance.

I can't wait to hear what Danny has to say on Monday.

illinoisrep's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-01-09

A WB/WFC retention deal would probably look like the AGE/WB deal. I am told that the MER/BAC retention deal will look like the AGE/WB retention deal. I suspect that for AGE reps, the WFC retention will be a small add on, not a whole new pile of cash.

Reggin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-09-03

"Wells Fargo Says Takeover Agreement With Wachovia Still Stands
By Ari Levy

Oct. 5 (Bloomberg) -- Wells Fargo & Co. said nothing in a court order obtained by New York-based Citigroup Inc. derails the California bank's plans to acquire Wachovia Corp.

``Wells Fargo and Wachovia have a firm, binding merger agreement,'' the San Francisco-based bank said today in a Business Wire statement. ``That agreement represents a transaction that, in stark contrast to Citigroup's proposal'' benefits shareholders and taxpayers, the company said. Wachovia, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, earlier affirmed it plans to proceed.

Citigroup, the biggest U.S. bank by assets, bid $2.16 billion last week for parts of Wachovia including the branch network, and Wells Fargo followed by offering $15 billion for the whole company, including the money-losing mortgage unit. Citigroup said a New York judge last night extended its sole right to negotiate with Wachovia.

The order by New York State Supreme Court Judge Charles Ramos doesn't have ``any effect on the validity of the Wells Fargo agreement,'' Wachovia said in its own statement. ``The agreement is in the best interests of shareholders, employees, creditors and retirees as well as the American taxpayers.''"

I wonder how WFC and WB will get out of this, what do they seem to know that we don't.

Gordon Gekko's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-08

It's called capitalism and the best deal for the public good (in my biased opinion). With my few hundred shares of WB, I am sure to move to needle.

Reggin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-09-03

This must be what they seem to know that we don't. From the meeting in Federal Court today:

Quote:
The $700 billion federal bailout of the banking industry passed by Congress includes language that permits Wells Fargo to step in, Wachovia's lawyers told U.S. District Court Judge John Koeltl today at an emergency hearing in Manhattan. Citigroup disputed that claim in court filings.

Koeltl said that it ``appears'' Wachovia has the superior argument. He declined to make a ruling on the dispute, giving the parties until Oct. 7 to file briefs on the matter. Lawyers for both sides said they were prepared for a trial in the case.

Ok - Bonus points for the person that finds the provision in Friday's bill that Wachovia is arguing.

Sportsfreakbob's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-08-24

fritz wrote:Judgw just ruled against WFC/WB deal..Looks like it will not go through, or will tied up in courts for a long long time.  Maybe should not spend the retention $$ yet.This is wrong. All the judge did was grant a TRO that blocks the Wells deal until a trial is held and arguments are heard. I believe this is scheduled for Friday. Then a decision will be made.My guess is that Citi loses. And then the question is, what happens to Citi. Without all those deposits that they seem to have needed, just how strong, or weak, are they?

Gordon Gekko's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-08

I'd be worried as a C shareholder, which I am not. As a WB employee and shareholder, I am just numb.

Sportsfreakbob's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-08-24

Gordon, i know how you feel. As a C shareholder and employee, i am numb, AND worried!Thank goodness i had this terrible habit of selling any restricted stock as i received it, since i am with the company.

eggward's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-08-06

I can proactively deal with either outcome.....its the uncertainty and waiting that is tough to wait out.  At this point, next Friday feels like it will be another year away.

Sportsfreakbob's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-08-24

Well, looks like the next battle is not going to be Friday in a NY court, but Tuesday, in a Fed court....http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/081005/wells_fargo_wachovia.html

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

Its looking more and more like WFC getting the WB securities is going to happen one way or another, either by taking all of WB or by giving some of the bank branches to C to get them to go away.
 
IMO advisors should expect some kind of rentention package to be offered.
 
I wonder if they would consider offering a choice of cash, stock, or both.

fritz's picture
Offline
Joined: 2006-01-11

Go_Long wrote:Its looking more and more like WFC getting the WB securities is going to happen one way or another, either by taking all of WB or by giving some of the bank branches to C to get them to go away.
 
IMO advisors should expect some kind of rentention package to be offered.
 
I wonder if they would consider offering a choice of cash, stock, or both.
 
CASH  Are you kidding?

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

What are you expecting, stage coach piggy banks? 

Reggin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-09-03

Go_Long wrote: Its looking more and more like WFC getting the WB securities is going to happen one way or another, either by taking all of WB or by giving some of the bank branches to C to get them to go away.
 
IMO advisors should expect some kind of rentention package to be offered.
 
I wonder if they would consider offering a choice of cash, stock, or both.

I'll take my payment in cash and vagina. There's a young teller at the local WF branch that I'll take as partial trade.

fritz's picture
Offline
Joined: 2006-01-11

Go_Long wrote:What are you expecting, stage coach piggy banks? 
 
Hearing may not even be a package..if one comes in it will be in Stck..they do not really care if you stay or not, they want assets and they are getting them for cheap.

punkbynature's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-07-13

Fritz sounds like a disgruntled AGE guy...Wells does not want the brokerage assets...they want the brokers AND the brokerage footprint. Retention is an absolute must for a company in absolute turmoil like WB is...
 
Wells has plenty of cash to pay brokers and I think they will structure the deal like the WB/AGE deal. To say they want the assets and don't care if the brokers leave makes no sense. Who do you think the assets will follow?
 
BAC announced some sort of package for MER today and who do you think WFC will be competing against?

Gordon Gekko's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-08

What did BAC offer MER reps?

burtonfinancial1's picture
Joined: 2008-09-30

MER retention is not out yet, but I'm hearing rumors that it may turn out to be rather disappointing. We shall see

Sportsfreakbob's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-08-24

i think anyone dreaming about a big retention package is dreaming. The world has changed. There is no place to go! The deals are coming down.

Gordon Gekko's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-08

I would be surprised if ws reps get much of anything(I am one of them). Where would the cash come from?

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

Gordo:
It's not the worst thing to keep expectations low. 

Reggin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-09-03

I heard an entire legacy AGE office moved today. I get their frustration, but TODAY? Just hump it out a little longer to see who the parent company is and if there is a retention. That plus the market action is a crap time to move.

Morphius's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-21

What do you care if someone else decided to move?  For those without the nads, now is always a bad time.  

Reggin's picture
Offline
Joined: 2005-09-03

Don't care because their move affects me exactly zero. I was making a comment on their bad timing, but you obviously lack decent reading comprehension.

There are bad times to make a move and this is one of those times. A little patience goes a long way.

Morphius's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-21

I comprehend fine.  You are of the opinion this is a bad time to move.  I am of the opinion that most people always find a reason why today is always a bad time to move.  Those who look for an excuse always find one.  Those who look for a way always find one too. 

Morphius's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-21

Hey Ferris,I am vaguely aware that there is something going on with the markets right now, and can even understand that this market makes it seem like a horrible time to contemplate a move.  I get that.  There is also this reality in this same news: many clients are so fed up with the news of big financial firms being in trouble, bought out, bailed out, bankrupted, merged and otherwise turned upside down that many would actually WELCOME a change.  Of course many are shell shocked, but do you think they are happy with the deer-in-the-headlights status quo?  Especially those who in just over a year have been whip-sawed from AGE to Wachovia to Citibank to independent to maybe AGE again to Wells to forget about Citi to ... whatever comes next.  I've actually gotten calls from clients thanking me for getting them out of Wachovia before all this happened.  Not complaining about these markets - thanking me!Maybe we underestimate our clients.  Maybe WE'RE the ones too afraid to act.  Maybe - just maybe - this is an IDEAL opportunity to make that move.   Crazier things have happened.

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

Maybe we underestimate our clients.  Maybe WE'RE the ones too afraid to act.  Maybe - just maybe - this is an IDEAL opportunity to make that move.  

 
I agee, the thought of moving may be more difficult for the rep than the client.  That said why not wait till you have all the info before making a decision.

rocky's picture
Offline
Joined: 2008-09-17

moving should be the last resort.  I moved last year, that did not seem like a very good time..It never feels like a good time to move.
Kind of like the prospect who wants to wait until the holidays to invest, then after the new year, then after tax season, etc.

Morphius's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-07-21

Ferris Bueller wrote: Morphius wrote: I've actually gotten calls from clients thanking me for getting them out of Wachovia before all this happened.  Not complaining about these markets - thanking me!Maybe we underestimate our clients.  Maybe WE'RE the ones too afraid to act.  Maybe - just maybe - this is an IDEAL opportunity to make that move.   Crazier things have happened.

Thanking you for what? I'm not aware of any Wachovia clients losing money because of the merger. Has the SPIC had to step in or even the FDIC? Oh sure, there has been a little uncertainty lately, but nothing an intelligent advisor can't explain to clients. They expect me to lead rationally and with an INFORMED decision, not with blind fear.   My clients have repeatedly told me that they will go wherever I go, but I tell them that we need to wait and see the final outcome. Wells Fargo is now the largest bank in the US and one of the top brokerage firms. I'm glad I waited, I did the right thing for my clients.I'm glad to hear you believe you have done the right thing for your clients, and if your clients agree than that's all that really matters.I wasn't intending to toss stones at Wachovia, Ferris.  I've told my clients this wasn't about running away from problems at Wachovia, and that in fact I still felt Wachovia (Securities, anyway) was among the best of it's competitors.  it was about moving to a business model that I believed better served them and me.  There was no blind fear involved, especially since the move took place before all this recent craziness started.What they have thanked me for is having one less thing to stress out over during stressful times.   It's not a matter of if it can be explained or not, but having one less thing to HAVE TO explain.  And it's just further reinforcement for me of what we all really hope anyway - that our clients are doing business with US, not our firm ... whichever that might be.So if your judgement is that it's best for your clients to stay with WS until you can see the final outcome, then I say great.  There are far worse places for clients or FAs to be for sure.  My point was simply that the market turmoil ALONE should not automatically prevent those who otherwise might like to move from doing so.

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

“We know this has been a time of great uncertainty for Wachovia team members and many of its customers as their company has gone through a very painful and challenging time,” Wells Fargo Chief Executive John Stumpf said late Thursday. “We want to assure them we’ll do everything we can to make the integration of our operations as smooth as possible. An important measure of success for this integration will be our ability to retain as many of the talented Wachovia team members as possible.”

rjones31's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-08-23

Go_Long wrote:“ An important measure of success for this integration will be our ability to retain as many of the talented Wachovia team members as possible.”
 
 

"An important measure of success for this integration will be our ability to retain as many of the talented Wachovia team members as possible"
 
Just a guess, but sub-300k advisors need not apply...Not sure of the most recent stats, but when I was at AGE (before the Wachovia takeover), this was a significant portion of the advisors.

troll's picture
Offline
Joined: 2004-11-29

So you would say to half the advisors they are not talented. LOL.  Good thing you weren't in charge of the last retention package... or this next one.
 

rjones31's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-08-23

I would say that Wells is probably much more interested in keeping producers of 500k + rather than those doing 300k or less and that their limited resources will go towards doing just that.  Doesn't mean those doing less than 300k are not talented, but will there be any tears being shed if they get upset at not getting a retention bonus and leave? Probably not. What Wells should do is tell the bigger producers that they'll give them an additional bonus based on assets they can keep of anybody who leaves.

WSxAG's picture
Offline
Joined: 2007-08-23

Talented  perhaps - Productive not so much from the wirehouse mentality viewpoint.
 
At the time of the takeover 2/3rds of the AGE FCs were below 350K. Somehow I doubt given the 40% decline in the market since then that their production has improved. 
BAC/Merrill just announced today that no branch managers were getting a retention package and they were going to  "build a wall around the top two thirds" of their producers.
 
Legacy AGE guys who already took retention should realistically anticipate they won't be getting another, while the WB guys will. What they should hope is that they don't get  Morgan Stanleyed circa Aug. 2005

Please or Register to post comments.

Industry Newsletters
Careers Category Sponsor Links

Sponsored Introduction Continue on to (or wait seconds) ×