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Prescott fills gap left by Lehman Brothers

THE ripples from the US sub-prime drama continue to lap at Western Australia’s shores, with South Australian stock broking firm Prescott Securities arriving to fill the vacancy left by Lehman Brothers in Perth. Savaged by the banking crisis that brought down its peer, Bear Stearns, Lehman decided to quit the private client business in Australia, including its nine-strong team in Perth. That opened the door for Prescott, an Adelaide-based broking firm owned by listed accounting and financial planning company WHK Group Ltd. Nine of Lehman’s former staff have joined Prescott, with former national head of wealth management Frank Sciarrone taking the lead role in Perth. Prescott has taken most of the former Lehman accommodation on St Georges Terrace. Prescott CEO David White said the move was part of a national expansion of the brokerage, which was the only stockbroker in WHK is stable, though its financial planning and wealth management approach made it a natural fit with the listed parent’s other operations. “We are quite attracted to Perth because it is a strong economy,” Mr White said. “It seemed to us to potentially be a good place for our business, not everyone in Perth puts all their money into resources.” Other advisers to join Prescott from Lehman are Matt McCarney, Steven Bell and Tim Flavell, along with several support staff.

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