September 27, 2019
Robert Matthews, former Smith Barney regional head, had run private wealth boutique Fieldpoint since 2010.
(Story updated with comment from Fieldpoint official in fourth paragraph.)
Robert Matthews, a longtime Smith Barney executive who had led wealth management boutique Fieldpoint Private since 2010, left the Connecticut-based firm on Thursday.
“I am no longer president and CEO, and am looking forward to my next chapter,” Matthews, 59, said in a brief interview on Friday. “There were no problems or smoking guns.”
He declined to discuss the reasons for his departure from Fieldpoint, which was founded in 2008 by a Who’s Who of Wall Street luminaries, including former Merrill Lynch CEOs David Komansky, John Steffens and Dan Tully, and former PaineWebber/UBS Chief Executive Joe Grano.
Michael White, Fieldpoint’s chief marketing officer, said the firm has not yet named a replacement for Matthews, and declined as a matter of firm policy to discuss the departure. “Bob was certainly an admired colleague, and we wish him the best,” he said.
Like many of the 25 advisors at Fieldpoint, White is a Smith Barney alumnus.
Matthews spent the bulk of his 35-year brokerage career with that firm, joining predecessor Lehman Brothers in 1983 and rising to become a branch manager, regional director and ultimately head of Smith Barney’s northeast division. When he left in mid-2008, a few months before Smith Barney was funneled to Morgan Stanley in a joint venture, he led Citigroup Global Wealth Advisory Services overseeing “thousands of professionals and a $120 billion balance sheet,” according to his Fieldpoint biography.
The firm’s client assets increased by 300% during Matthews tenure, it said, and he has attracted former colleagues such as Robert McCabe, who joined this summer to run a Fieldpoint office in Palm Beach, Fla.
“There is a fabulous collection of people at Fieldpoint who I’m going to miss,” Matthews said.
But the firm’s founders and directors were impatient with Fieldpoint’s low profile, and considered its growth sluggish, according to some outsiders. It manages under $5 billion of client assets.
Fieldpoint also has lost some advisors, including the departure in May of David Zoll and Sarah Pifer. They were managing about $400 million and joined a HighTower-affiliated advisory firm led by former J.P. Morgan Securities advisor Richard Saperstein.
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