Morgan Stanley has officially laid to rest Smith Barney, the 75-year-old iconic Wall Street brokerage brand.
The New York Post reports that the investment bank run by CEO James Gorman owns a majority 51% share of a joint venture with Citigroup’s prominent brokerage firm Smith Barney, which it purchased during the height of the banking crisis.
However, top officials at Morgan Stanley have opted to nix the legendary brand in favor of a new name: Morgan Stanley Wealth Management.
The Wall Street Journal has the internal memo:
To: Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Employees
From: James Gorman and Greg Fleming
Tomorrow (Tuesday), Morgan Stanley Smith Barney officially becomes Morgan Stanley Wealth Management. As many of you know, we will be communicating this change through a variety of marketing initiatives, which you will be able to leverage with your clients. Over the years, the Smith Barney name has earned broad respect and admiration, and we have deep appreciation for the ways in which the Smith Barney tradition is strengthening our franchise. As we now move under one name and advertise in support of our brand, here is what you can expect.
On Tuesday, we are launching a six-week advertising campaign in the print and online versions of the Wall Street Journal and Barron’s. The first of these ads appears in tomorrow’s WSJ, and it also can be viewed at Morgan Stanley Today. These ads illustrate why we have the world’s best Financial Advisors, and they highlight the ways in which we help our clients achieve their goals......
In addition, we are introducing an internal website that provides resources linked to the ad campaign, including customizable marketing materials. It can be viewed by typing “facampaign” into your browser. Morgan Stanley Wealth Management employees also will receive a book illustrating the values that have propelled Morgan Stanley throughout our 75-year history. It includes firsthand accounts and Q&A with some of our colleagues, and it can be shared with clients. Finally, we will be sending written communications to all of our clients, notifying them that we are now officially Morgan Stanley Wealth Management.
Going forward, “Morgan Stanley Wealth Management” will stand for the first-class service, and the tradition of excellence that clients have long associated with the Morgan Stanley and Smith Barney names. We hope that the initiatives we have outlined here will support and complement your client outreach.