LOUISVILLE, Ky.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Hilliard Lyons, one of the nation’s leading wealth advisory firms, today announced a major upgrade in technology that will usher in a new generation of resources and capabilities for the 162-year-old firm’s employees and clients. The company has signed a strategic agreement with St. Louis-based First Clearing, LLC (FirstClearing.com). The agreement’s terms were not disclosed, but it does not involve any exchange of equity, ownership, or control.
“This agreement will help Hilliard Lyons maintain our industry-leading position as a provider of wealth planning advice by bringing state-of-the-art technology to our employees and clients,” said James Allen, Hilliard Lyons’ Chief Executive Officer. “Our clients require technology that allows us to serve them at the highest level. This is the foundation for our future and enables us to invest in our core wealth planning business to keep it strong, growing, and independent.”
Technology focus: Under the agreement, First Clearing will provide Hilliard Lyons with a technology platform with new tools and capabilities for Hilliard Lyons’ employees and clients, helping the company retain its leadership position as a prominent provider of wealth planning advice.
For example, the new technology will give Hilliard Lyons’ Financial Consultants an integrated platform with nearly 300 applications to help them meet client needs, providing an expanded array of planning and reporting services. The new platform is fully mobile as well, enabling Hilliard Lyons to better serve clients wherever they are.
Transition to “fully disclosed”: This agreement will also see Hilliard Lyons become a fully disclosed broker-dealer, with First Clearing conducting certain “back office” functions. This move will improve overall operating efficiency and should lead to productivity gains on multiple levels and allow the firm to focus on the delivery of value-added advice to clients. Hilliard Lyons will move affected employees to other positions or, if necessary, help them transition to new roles.
Future growth: Hilliard Lyons intends to grow its network of more than 70 offices in 12 states to serve more clients in more places and will continue to focus on supporting their clients’ needs.
Historical context: Hilliard Lyons traces its roots back to the 1850s, when predecessors of the firm began trading commodities such as pork and tobacco. Throughout its long lineage of community leaders, Hilliard Lyons has forged a reputation for safeguarding client interests. Thirty years ago, Hilliard Lyons formed Hilliard Lyons Trust Company, Kentucky’s first non-bank trust company and one of the largest independent trust companies in the region.
The firm’s reputation was memorialized in 1922 in an advertisement recreating the announcement of the formation of A.D. Hunt & Co., where J.J.B. Hilliard had become a partner. The ad states in part:
“Special attention given to investing money was then, and is now, the foundation-stone of our business. The experience gained in this long series of years, the financial connections of two generations, the wide knowledge of securities, and the conscientious effort to live up to the promise to care faithfully for the needs of the investor, comprise the service now offered to banks, trustees, corporations, and individuals.”
Hilliard Lyons’ new agreement with First Clearing will enable the firm to continue its long tradition of serving and advising clients with distinction and with the best tools available.
More about Hilliard Lyons: Founded in 1854 and operating over 70 offices in 12 Midwestern and Southeastern states, Hilliard Lyons (www.hilliard.com) focuses on creating, preserving, and distributing clients’ wealth. The firm specializes in planning issues that include education funding, retirement, business succession, and trusts and estates – to advise clients through life’s financial challenges.
J.J.B. Hilliard, W.L. Lyons, LLC, is a member of the New York Stock Exchange, FINRA, and SIPC.