Raymond James & Associates has lured away a branch manager from Morgan Stanley to help with the firm's expansion efforts.

Michael Schipper in his new role will lead Raymond James' San Francisco office, and play a key part in the firm's plans to build out its employee channel presence on the West Coast.

"I don't have a book," says Schipper, a 23-year industry veteran. "I'm here first to support my people come heck or high water, and second to tell the Raymond James story and grow the business by finding great, ethical advisors with great practices and bring them on board."

Schipper previously oversaw Morgan's office in Oakland, Calif. His hire follows on the heels of several recent recruiting moves in the Pacific Coast states, where Raymond James has been making concerted efforts to grow its business. On Wall Street reported on Tuesday the addition of two teams managing a combined $560 million in the same region.

Advisor Trent Morton left D.A. Davidson, where he managed $290 million in assets and generated $2 million in production while Robert Pehl and his sister Lynn left Morgan Stanley, where the two had more than $265 million in AUM and generated $1.4 million in annual revenue.

So far this year the Tampa Bay-based firm has recruited advisors in California managing more than $1 billion in assets, and opened several new offices.

"Raymond James is delighted to have partnered with such proven talent as Michael. His experience in building and developing teams of advisors is just what we are looking for as we build out this market," Tash Elwyn, president of Raymond James & Associates, said in a statement.

Schipper started his financial services career in 1993 with Merrill Lynch in Moline, Ill., according to FINRA records. He joined Smith Barney's Davenport, Iowa, office in 1999, and stayed through the merger with Morgan Stanley. In 2005, he moved to the firm's San Francisco office to serve as an assistant manager.

Schipper says he looks forward to helping his new employer build out their presence in the Bay area. "The main opportunity for Raymond James is that they are a phenomenal firm but they are new and expanding their footprint on the West Coast. I think that the vast majority of the advisors in the Bay Area aren't familiar [yet] with the Raymond James story."

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