Private client stockbroker Christows is to open up in Birmingham after recruiting a six-strong team from Brewin Dolphin.
Martin Lord, Adrian Quin, Mark Northover, Ian Moseley, Nick Jones and Simon Long have agreed to join once they are contractually free to do so and have given notice to Brewin.
John Cadwallader, head of Brewin's Birmingham office, said Mr Lord and Mr Quin were on six months notice, Mr Northover and Mr Moseley were bound for three months, while Mr Jones and Mr Long will be free to start their new jobs after four weeks.
Founded in Exeter in 1991 and named after a Devon village, Christows has since opened offices in Bournemouth and Bath,
It is now wholly owned by Evolution, the broker that attracted considerable controversy after last month's collapse of the price of the AIMlisted shares of Regal Petroleum three weeks after it placed 11.5 million of them with City institutions at 390p.
The Regal price tumbled to a low of 57p after the company reported that wells it was drilling in the Aegean had failed to find oil in commercial quantities.
Yesterday Robin O'Grady, Christows' director of sales and marketing, said the firm does not put its clients into shares being promoted by Evolution.
"I am pleased that we can take the Christows brand into new territory and continue the success that we have enjoyed to date," he added.
"The individuals joining Christows from Brewin Dolphin are highly regarded and they will help us build our funds under management, in order to help us achieve our objective of £1 billion."
At present Christows' clients have portfolios valued at some £670 million.
About 75 per cent of them have been introduced to the broker by independent financial advisers, and most of the remainder through solicitors and accountants. He expects
1993. the new team in Birmingham to adopt a similar approach.
"They will provide the dedicated portfolio management skill base necessary to manage high net worth clients, pension funds, charities and tax efficient investment portfolios," Christows stated.
Mr Cadwallader commented: "It is unusual for us to be at the receiving end, losing people like this. It is a disappointment.
"We have lost six members of our intermediary investment management team.
"This is six people out of an office of 50-plus," he pointed out. "We are obviously reorganising ourselves to continue to provide a top-class service to our clients.
"So there is no need to rush out and recruit. We will be looking to recruit in certain areas in due course."
Mr Lord, Mr Quin, Mr Northover and Mr Moseley were all with Allied Provincial Securities when it was taken over by Brewin Dolphin.
They came with the private client side of Smith Keen Cutler, when APS bought it in 1993.