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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Challenger Day will get students with disabilities onto the field


Students from 22 Henrico County elementary schools will take to the baseball field Oct. 18 and learn how to field, hit and run the bases. The students will take part in Challenger Day, an annual event at the Tuckahoe Park Baseball Complex that introduces students with significant disabilities to the fundamentals of baseball. The students will also enjoy games, an art project, roaming mascots and a picnic lunch. > Read more.

Business in brief


Eisenman & Associates, Inc. employee Tracie Grady recently was named the 2017 Virginia Business Meeting Planner of the Year. Grady was chosen by a committee of industry leaders among 19 nominees. The award is a partnership between Virginia Business magazine and the Virginia Society of Association Executives. Its goal is to recognize the unsung hero of the association, non-profit, and business world, the professional meeting planner. Grady works with clients in a number of areas, including membership management, publication design, membership directories and convention/tradeshow programs. She has worked in the association industry, primarily focused on meeting planning, for more than 20 years. She is a graduate of VCU. Eisenman & Associates, Inc. is an association management and meetings consulting company. > Read more.

Lakewood to break ground on $64M expansion


A senior community in Henrico's Far West End is planning a massive expansion project.

Lakewood, located on Lauderdale Drive, will break ground on the project Oct. 19 during a celebration that also will commemorate the community's 40th anniversary. > Read more.

Henrico to hold Oct. 19 workshop on Route 5 Corridor/Marion Hill Study


The Henrico County Planning Department will hold a workshop Thursday, Oct. 19 for residents and other members of the public to provide additional input for a study of the Route 5 corridor and Marion Hill areas.

The workshop will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at John Rolfe Middle School, 6901 Messer Road. The meeting will include an overview of community input received so far and an explanation of how it is reflected in the study’s draft goals and objectives. > Read more.

Nominations open for REB awards for principals


Nominations are open for the 2017-18 REB Awards for Distinguished Educational Leadership, The Community Foundation’s yearly awards that identify, recognize and support leadership excellence in the Richmond area.

Honorees receive an unrestricted $7,500 cash grant, and $7,500 to be used for school initiatives. Nominees can be principals from public schools in Henrico, Chesterfield and Hanover counties and the city of Richmond who have served in their current positions for at least three years. > Read more.

Henrico Business Bulletin Board

October 2017
S M T W T F S
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Celebrate Halloween with a Spook-tacular Magic Show starring the Amazing Mr. B at 7 p.m. at Fairfield Library. Halloween treats will be shared at the end of the show. For details, call 501-1930 or visit http://www.henricolibrary.org. Full text

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