In 1996, then 26-year old Gary Wunderlich coupled his investment banking background with an entrepreneurial vision when he acquired a small broker/dealer in Memphis, Tennessee, and launched Wunderlich Securities. During a time of broad consolidation among the larger, regional investment firms, Wunderlich sought to fill a void with his new venture. Initially, Wunderlich Securities focused only on serving individual investors in the Memphis area. But within two years, the industry took notice and Wunderlich’s Private Client Group welcomed a team of like-minded advisors in Houston, Texas, which became the firm’s first of many branch locations.
By 2002, the firm was well-established with 60 experienced financial advisors. Over the next six years, Wunderlich expanded its reach into institutional sales, trading and research with the launch of its Fixed Income division, followed shortly by an Equity Capital Markets division. During this time, the firm’s growth and business model attracted the attention of Coil Investment Group, a Norwegian-based private equity and venture capital firm, which then became a financial partner in 2007. This investment fueled continued expansion for Wunderlich in the years ahead.
As the Private Client Group added advisors and new locations in Tennessee and Michigan, the Equity division expanded into investment banking as a result of two banking boutique acquisitions. By 2011, the firm’s equity research effort had grown to 16 analysts following over 200 companies.
Considered by this time a full-service financial services firm as a result of a broad offering of individual and institutional services, Wunderlich was recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of the fastest growing private companies of 2010. This honor was repeated again in 2011, 2012 and 2013 as the firm continued to chart steady growth across all divisions.
By 2013, Wunderlich’s Private Client Group had surpassed 200 financial advisors with $8 billion in client assets. During that year, the firm received a second capital investment through Altamont Capital Partners, a California-based private equity firm with over $1 billion in capital.
Yet another notable milestone was Wunderlich Investment Company’s 2015 acquisition of Dominick & Dominick, an esteemed firm with a century of history on Wall Street. This expansion of the Wunderlich Wealth Management division added new branches in New York and Miami. Also in 2015, the firm acquired a Dallas-based investment advisory firm, Fiduciary Financial Services of the Southwest, which increased assets under management by more than $400 million.
Wunderlich celebrated a significant milestone in 2016 – 20 years in business. Over two decades, Wunderlich evolved from a 10-person start up in Memphis to a full-service wealth management firm with over $10 billion in client assets under administration and offices across the United States.
In mid-2017, the firm became a part of B. Riley Financial, a publicly traded, broadly diversified financial services company. This new affiliation will provide our advisors with access to a broader suite of products and services to address their clients' financial needs and fuel continued growth of our wealth management team.
Looking ahead to a future filled with possibility, Wunderlich is firmly committed to the vision that has led to its success thus far – remaining ever diligent in our focus to serve our clients well.