Thursday, May 22, 2008

Re-opening the "Why Not Downtown?" File

Good news: Benjamin F. "Tad" Edwards IV has left Wachovia Securities to form his own brokerage firm, Benjamin F. Edwards & Co.

Bad news: It will be located in Clayton.

While downtown is not perfect for every business, Edwards' new firm would have been an ideal fit for downtown, bolstering its financial services presence. In this case, the argument for choosing Clayton is most likely its proximity to Edwards' clients. However, the brokerage business is a relationship business. If Edwards had decided to locate downtown, would it have caused his clients to switch to a financial advisor located closer to their homes? Doubtful.

In order for downtown to turn the corner, it will do so on the backs of small firms with growth potential like Benjamin F. Edwards & Co. Instead, we're left with another missed opportunity.


JMedwick said...

Based on the info in the Post article, Edwards had most recently been manager of the AG Edwards Chesterfield branch. Given that, it is a step forward that he is locating the office in Clayton rather than out in the Valley or even in Creve Coeur.

that said, this again is an opportunities missed for the City of St. Louis, who should have been offering financial incentives that would benefit the growth of a new company in downtown.

goat314 said...

three words: City Earnings Tax

Anonymous said...

more than three words: city earnings tax is a cop out.

Tad is the dimmest of the Edwards family. I bet money Ben wanted to move back downtown but Tad was never fond of downtown or the City for that matter because he is not crazy about diversity.

Diversity and small minded people are to blame the earnings tax is just the scape goat. I know many business owners who stay in the city and not one has gone bankrupt from the earnings tax.