Merrill Miami hires $5.5 billion advisory team from Citi Private Bank

Merrill Lynch has recruited a $5.5 billion advisory team for its international wealth management business in Coral Gables, Florida.

Eugenio Retana, Angel Ferrer and Mike Persinski were hired by the company last month, according to information originally reported by Barrons.

Retana, who spent her career at Citi, most recently working as an ultra-high net worth adviser for the group, left earlier this month, according to information from BrokerCheck and LinkedIn.

He joined Citi in July 2005 as an associate banker, first registering as a broker with Citicorp Investment Services. He then obtained his investment advisory license in 2008, according to his BrokerCheck report.

While there, he was “responsible for developing and managing private banking relationships” with international clients and provided advice on investment management, capital markets, wealth and estate planning and global banking, and spent over seven years covering Latin and Central America, via LinkedIn.

He joined the firm as a private wealth advisor and provides bespoke financial solutions to ultra-high net worth domestic and “global” families, according to his LinkedIn bio.

Meanwhile, advisers Persinski and Ferrer are still registered with Citi Private Advisory, according to their respective BrokerCheck reports, but are expected to switch to Merrill Lynch in the coming weeks.

Persinski, who has more than 33 years of experience in the financial industry, spent 18 years at Citi Private Bank, working for his company in Washington DC, per BrokerCheck.

Ferrer began his financial career in 2000 and held positions at Bank of America, Wachovia Securities and Wells Fargo, where he worked in Miami between 2007 and 2009 before joining Citi’s Miami operations, per BrokerCheck.

A spokesperson for Bank of America, the parent company of Merrill Lynch, declined to comment, while team members could not be reached for comment.

According to its website, the Coral Gables branch of Merrill Lynch has a multitude of advisors and teams catering to international clients.

Retana and her two team members will likely report to Josh Moody, regional managing director of Merrill Lynch Private Wealth Management in Florida.

Earlier this month, Citi’s head of global wealth management, Jim O’Donnell, said his firm would seek to hire more than 3,000 advisers for its $800 billion global wealth management business in course of the next few years.

However, recent moves in the US offshore market have seen many Citi advisers leave the group.

In February, a Citi senior adviser left to build a billion-dollar team at Morgan Stanley while another based in New York quit.

Bolton Global Capital recently hired a Citi veteran to lead its business development efforts in Miami and a $2 billion Citi adviser covering Brazil left earlier this month after two decades with the firm.

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