The Davy Group story
Davy Group’s story is one that parallels that of Ireland and its economic development. James Davy, on the advice of his UCD economics professor, decided to enter stockbroking after graduating with a degree in Economics. In 1926, a few years after Irish independence, James became a member of the Dublin Stock Exchange and was soon joined by his brother Eugene to establish J&E Davy, with its first office located on Westmoreland Street, Dublin.
Against the odds
At the time, Irish stockbroking was dominated by brokers who trained in London and lacked a more specific Irish perspective. The bulk of business consisted of buying and selling major British-quoted shares for private clients. It was in this environment that J&E Davy set about building up a stockbroking business. Over the next two decades the two brothers gradually built up the company by tapping into the slowly emerging Irish middle class. Thanks to their combined talents and hard work they earned a reputation for trustworthiness, honesty and integrity - values that hold true today.
The 30s, 40s and 50s were times of gradual but steady change for Ireland as the country found its feet and established its own industries and infrastructure. The Davy brothers worked with many of the leading banks, solicitors and accountancy firms, offering sound financial advice and building a solid, well-connected business network. While the core of the business was stockbroking, the brothers sat on the boards of many companies and national organisations and both played key roles in guiding and shaping the changing economic landscape.
Photo: James Davy addressing the Irish Stock Exchange in 1944 as its president.
New ideas, new opportunities
By the time their respective sons, Brian and Joseph, joined the business in the early 60s, the Irish economy was beginning to open up. With the new generation came new ideas and new opportunities. Before entering the Dublin market, Brian spent time in London and on Wall Street and recognised new directions in which Davy could develop. This required introducing new skills and talents to the company. The first step was to establish a dedicated research expertise, delivering greater insights into Irish companies, the local economy and its potential for investors and companies alike. Just like the founding partners, the new breed of Davy talent approached the challenges and opportunities with unique local insights, innovation and energy.
Photo: At the turn of the 19th century, the Davy family name was associated with a chain of South Dublin pubs. The most famous of these was J&T Davy in Portobello. The pub, pictured here, was occupied by insurgents on Easter Monday, 1916.
New environment, new rules
During the 60s and 70s, Davy was instrumental in bringing about the move from private to institutional investors as pension funds and merchant banks were established. It mapped out the way for institutional investment in Ireland, offering sound advice and putting effective principles in place, backed up by a professional research-based service. Indicative of the high regard in which Davy was held by its corporate and institutional clients was the fact that Davy acted as company broker to both AIB and Bank of Ireland during this key period of national economic development.
Building a global network
During the 70s and 80s, the Davy team travelled to Britain, Europe, the US, the Middle East, Asia and Japan to open up new markets and investment opportunities. Over time they built up a global distribution network, giving their clients access to new sources of funding. Davy handled its first Initial Public Offering (IPO) listing on the Irish Stock Exchange in 1964 and by 2005 Davy was responsible for listing over 60% of the companies.
As the Irish economy grew in the 90s, so too did the demand for wealth management services for private clients. Many successful individuals turned to Davy when they needed advice on how best to preserve and grow the wealth and capital they have built up.
The Davy Group today
Davy is Ireland’s leading provider of wealth management, and capital markets services. We offer a broad range of services to private clients, small businesses, corporations and institutional investors. Davy is a member of the Bank of Ireland Group.
The Davy Group at a glance
Employing over 800 people, we have offices in Dublin, Belfast, Cork, Galway and London. Over recent years we have continued to invest substantially in our infrastructure and in developing our people to provide clients with enhanced services and opportunities. In 2012 we expanded our offering with the launch of Davy Select, an online pension and investment platform, and with the acquisition of Bloxham’s Private Client & Asset Management businesses. During the subsequent years we further strengthened our leading position in the island of Ireland with the acquisitions of Prescient Investment Managers (Ireland) Limited (formerly AIB Investment Managers), investment consultancy iCubed, and Trusted Advisor Group in the Republic of Ireland and Square Seven Financial Planning, Graham Corry Cheevers, and Pension & Financial Consultants (PFC) in Northern Ireland.
Core values: clients first
Despite all the continuous change over the years, the core values instilled by James and Eugene Davy still remain true - always putting our clients’ interests first and harnessing the energy, talent, diverse skills and experience of our people to deliver exceptional results.