Baird reports more than $1 billion in revenues

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Milwaukee-based Robert W. Baird & Co. Inc. reported record net revenues of $1.1 billion in 2013, up 11 percent from $961 million in 2012.

Operating income was $117 million, up 17 percent from a year prior and another record. Assets under management increased by $17 billion, to $117 billion at the end of 2013. Return on equity was up to 15 percent.

This is the fourth straight year of record revenues for the global wealth management, capital markets, private equity and asset management firm.

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“Baird’s record financial results and the milestones we surpassed in 2013 are the result of client-focused, strategic initiatives over a number of years to consistently expand our capabilities in each of our businesses,” said Paul Purcell, Baird chairman and chief executive officer. “Our strong performance is meaningful to us because it reflects the trust our clients place in us to provide them with expert advice that is in their best interests.”

The private wealth management division expanded its branch network to 75 offices and more than 725 financial advisors. The asset management division grew 15 percent, to $22.7 billion.

Investment banking hired 20 bankers and increased equity underwriting. The fixed income capital markets division has increased hiring by 58 percent in the past five years and now has 209 employees. And Baird Capital, the private equity arm, has raised more than $3 billion since it was started.

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“As an independent and employee-owned firm, we have the freedom to make investments in our business that best meet the needs of our clients,” said Steve Booth, Baird president and chief operating office. “We also have our reputation and capital on the line every day, which makes us mindful that our success depends on our clients’ success.”

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