As chair and CEO of Raymond James Ltd., Paul Allison oversees business-building efforts and strategic leadership of the firm’s Canadian operations, including Equity Capital Markets, Private Client, and Corporate Services.
Allison brings more than 26 years of senior capital markets and investment banking experience to this role, including underwriting and arranging public and private debt and equity capital raising, as well as developing and managing retail products at firms such as Merrill Lynch Canada and BMO Nesbitt Burns, one of Canada’s leading bank-owned investment dealers.
During his time at Raymond James, Allison has been involved in massive cross-border deals for clients including Petro-Canada, Brookfield, Jean Coutu, Thomson Reuters, and Power Financial. Wooing a banker with this kind of experience from Merrill Lynch, a far larger rival, is a huge coup from Florida-based Raymond James, which has 330 stockbrokers in Canada and 4,770 financial advisors worldwide. Raymond James’ retail brokerage network has grown by more than 50 percent in under three years because of Allison’s efforts. The firm is now home to 460 brokers including a few in its recently opened Montreal office. "It's about identifying people. It's a relationship process, but first and foremost it's about the culture of the organization," said Allison.
Allison has also proven himself to be a strong contributor to the community. He is a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and is an active volunteer in various charitable and industry organizations, including acting as a director of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada and as board chair of the Humber River Hospital (HRH). Allison was actively involved in the support and fundraising of the HRH from the start, and he and Team Revolution raised over 400,000 USD toward the initiative. He has also served on the Dean's Business Advisory Council at the DeGroote School of Business, has participated numerous times as the Gould Trading Floor's trader-in-residence, and has attended many McMaster alumni events over the years.
In 2014 Allison was presented the Wayne C. Fox Distinguished Alumni Award because his personal accomplishments, reputation, and character have by association enhanced the reputation of McMaster University. It is the highest honor awarded by the DeGroote Alumni Association and is a celebration of the enduring quality of a DeGroote School of Business education at McMaster.
Allison’s drive to excel in and improve the financial industry, his volunteer contributions to society, and his dedication to his alma mater exemplify the type of leadership that other business alumni can look up to and strive to achieve.