No shell game

Despite the challenging economic climate, a Henrico-based financial services consulting firm is moving forward with aggressive expansion plans.

With the addition of two new financial executives and an upgraded office space, Oyster Consulting is focused on assisting its clients with efficiency and business growth. The firm takes financial services firms under its wing to nurture business growth by providing audit, compliance, financial, operational and technology consulting.

Oyster assists broker/dealers, investment advisors, hedge funds, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds and private equity firms to create “simplicity in a complex environment,” according to managing director and founder Buddy Doyle.

Doyle is confident that Oyster will be able to maintain both its high quality and service as it expands.

“We have built a company specifically designed to achieve these satisfaction levels, because we believe they are the foundation of lasting, meaningful strength,” Doyle said. “We want to be a consistently profitable organization that develops a loyal client and employee base through the integrity of our associates and the quality and value of our advice and tools.”

Doyle, Patrick Dennis and Rob Hall founded the firm in October 2008. The trio previously worked with Wachovia Securities, but after that company purchased AG Edwards and moved its headquarters from Richmond to St. Louis, Doyle, Hall and Dennis gravitated toward a different ambition.

“While we started out as a compliance-consulting firm based on our backgrounds, we had the vision of creating a firm that comprehensively supports wealth management firms,” Doyle said. “Since then, we’ve attracted the highest quality consultants: both former Wachovia Securities colleagues and professionals from other firms.”

Currently, Oyster Consulting employs 35 consultants located in Richmond, Charlotte, the Washington, D.C. area, New York, Pennsylvania and Oregon.

In addition to adding training resources, relationship management and a sales force, Oyster Consulting also relocated recently to Innsbrook. Its 8,000 square feet of space will allow the team to accommodate more employees. In fact, during the next 12 months, Doyle expects the firm to surpass the 100-employee level.

“While some folks think we are experiencing pretty rapid growth, we feel as though we are just adding the resources we need to get going,” he said. “We are looking for exponential growth and our plan looks at the right time to add to marketing, sales, support, training and technology to support that growth.”

The two newest members to join the Oyster team, Paul F. Costello and Ann M. Griffith, were chosen for their experience in the financial industry and their leadership skills. Costello will handle strategic consulting and business development support, while Griffith will oversee regulatory compliance implementation and testing.

Griffith’s experience comes from serving 20 years as a director and in-house counsel at World Bank’s International Finance Corporation, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Credit Suisse Securities. Costello brings Oyster more than 30 years of leadership experience from his past positions as president and CEO of the First Variable Life Insurance Company; president of Mentor Family of Mutual Funds; president and CEO of First Clearing LLC; president of Business Services Group; COO, Wachovia Securities; and founding principal of Onyx Associates, LLC.

The firm’s consultants believe that its depth and breadth of services add value to its clients, Doyle said.

“You see a very diverse background from within wealth management. All come together as a team with over five centuries of combined experience to help our clients protect their firms, create efficiency and focus on growing their business,” he said. “Oyster is a boutique consulting firm that combines the sophistication, knowledge and experience of a big firm with the flexibility, service and costs of an entrepreneur.”
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Preschoolers give pillows to families in need


A group of preschoolers from Chesterbrook Academy Preschool donated 56 pillows to local families in need at the Housing Families First shelter. The shelter is always in need of pillows and linens as, since families take the donated ones with them to their new homes.

Housing Families First provides shelter and support for homeless families and assist them in finding a permanent housing solution. The shelter serves people year-round, said Terri Iguina, operations and volunteer manager at Housing Families First. > Read more.

Dairy Queen’s Blizzard sales July 27 to benefit Children’s Hospital of Richmond


Dairy Queen’s 13th Annual Miracle Treat Day – Thursday, July 27 – will raise fund to benefit sick and injured children being treated at Children's Miracle Network hospitals throughout the United States. Locally, $1 or more from every Blizzard Treat sold at participating locations will be donated to the Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU. Last year, the event raised more than $14,400 for the hospital. > Read more.

Henrico Business Bulletin Board

July 2017
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VCU's Office of Continuing and Professional Education will offer free events during 3rd Wednesdays at Regency Square. Today’s topic is “Virginia529 Plan: Saving for Continuing Education.” Learn how you and your family can benefit from the tax advantages of a Virginia529 account. Sessions for the 3rd Wednesday series will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the Garden Room adjacent to the food court. For details and to register, visit http://www.ocpe.vcu.edu/community. Full text

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