From new computers to more sales assistants and a new training class full of rookies who started in August, McCann has made his presence known.

Before McCann, management of U.S. operations was closer to the Swiss leadership. In Switzerland, wealth management operates like a private bank rather than a retail brokerage in terms of compensation, client fees and the service model.

"The Swiss were basically running the place, but now McCann is keeping UBS's banking perspective out of it. Rather than turning it into a private bank, it's staying a brokerage," said Mike Kostoff, a brokerage consultant at the Kostoff Group.

McCann created a "renewal team" to help form strategy and its ranks include many new hires of his former Merrill Lynch colleagues including Bob Mulholland, Brian Hull and John Brown. He has since made several other major hires, restructured the chain of command and cut some middle management in an effort to increase efficiency.

In July, the Americas unit partnered with Merrill Lynch's ex-chief investment strategist, Richard Bernstein to provide third-party research and investment advice to retail clients. It's likely the first of several such deals.

McCann has said he wants to build up the mortgage and other loans business. In August, he hired two executives from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp., Frank Destra and Jonathan Kessler, to make a push in that area and plans to hire 35 more mortgage experts in coming months to work with brokers.

McCann most recently brought in Jerry Pascucci, a former Morgan Stanley Smith Barney executive, for a new position as head of alternative investments overseeing managed futures, hedge funds, real estate and private equity investments. The goal is to ramp up sales in those areas, according to the memo announcing his hire.

"He hasn't wasted any time," the broker in the northern U.S. said of McCann. "Since he walked in the door he's been slicing and dicing this place, but no one's saying we didn't need it."

Copyright (c) 2010, Dow Jones. For more information about Dow Jones' services for advisors, please click here.  


First « 1 2 » Next