Local service, worldwide expertise
By Jack Criss
Founded in 1957 by Sonny Blakeman, Blakeman, Brister and Putman Financial Group has throughout its history established itself as one of the Delta’s—most recognizable money/wealth management teams.
Along with partners Mike Brister and David Putman, Chip Otts, an Indianola native, has been associated with the firm since 2000, he says the company offers a full array of stocks, mutual funds, bonds and CD’s to their clients.
“We have quite a few second and third generation clients whose family members have stayed with us since the inception of the firm. Our retention rate has been incredibly strong and many of our clients are indeed the children or grandchildren of older clients we’ve had for years,” says Otts.
Blakeman, Brister and Putman will work with anyone to help them with their investment and financial needs. “One of my favorite client profiles is 18-21 year olds,” says Otts. “I just recently had a young man, 21 years old, who came in to see us with money he had saved from a summer job, he wanted to invest in the market. To me, that spells success. I can tell these young people are going to be successful in their lives because they’re already thinking ahead and looking at good investment opportunities—and by me taking time with them now, they’ll remain clients for the long haul. It’s a pleasure to help those kinds of clients just getting started. We all like to bring in and work with the large investors, but our firm won’t turn away anyone who is serious and wants good advice.”
As far as 2020? “This has been a fabulous year for us and for our clients despite the pandemic,” says Otts. “The people who were brave during the heart of the market correction in March, many are up double digits now. The stock market seems to not to be largely influenced by COVID anymore. It was a little spooky early on, but it’s been going gangbusters ever since March 9th. Of course with many of our clients, the election is the new concern and I’m fielding calls about that now. I think we will just have to wait until late October, some clients might want to position themselves differently ahead of the election, I believe we will just have to wait and see.”
What makes Blakeman, Brister and Putman a firm people would want to use? “When I sit down with a new client, I always tell them there are a lot of other guys who do the same thing I do,” says Otts. “But, we here like to develop special, personal relationships. You don’t have to dial a 1-800 number and start pressing various buttons to get whatever service you need–we’re totally accessible. If you’re worried about something, call me–call any of us, come by. We are always available here at this firm.
We’re self-employed people and that means we work seven days a week. Plus, all we do is manage money. We focus on one aspect and we specialize in that one aspect. I believe that’s an advantage in this business.”
“We’re not brokers in Dallas, Nashville, New York City or any other metropolis. I personally am just a small town guy and proud of it. Our clients feel free to just drop by the office at any time or we’ll go out and see them if they are not able to get out. We have the same level of expertise and the same resources as any other firm with a big market address and but there is plenty of business in Cleveland, Winona and Delta areas. We have great people in this area, we are glad to give them access to Wall Street right here at home, I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else,” says Otts.