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20 Things You Didn't Know about Edward Jones

Edward Jones is a business that specializes in providing its clients with financial services. It is interesting to note that while said business has existed for decades and decades, it has maintained a strong focus on its chosen clientele. Something that has had a fair amount of impact on the nature of its operations as well as other important factors such as their scale and scope. Here are 20 things that you may or may not have known about Edward Jones:

1. Edward Jones Is a Simplified Name

It should be mentioned that Edward Jones isn't the full name of the business. Instead, it is a simplified name that sees use in a wide range of contexts for the sake of convenience. With that said, there isn't much lost, seeing as how the full name is Edward D. Jones & Co., L.P., meaning that Edward Jones is more than enough to communicate most of the important pieces of information.

2. Edward Jones Refers to a Single Person

Given the name, it should come as no surprise to learn that the name of the business refers to a single person, who was the one who founded it. This is particularly true when one looks at the full name, which makes this fact very clear to those who can be bothered to read exactly what it says.

3. Not the Same Edward Jones as the One Who Co-founded Dow Jones

Edward Jones isn't exactly the most unusual combination of names that can be found out there. As a result, when someone stumbles upon the fact that Dow Jones was co-founded by a man named Edward Jones, they shouldn't make the mistake of thinking that the two were one and the same. After all, while there is some overlap in their respective lives, there was nonetheless a huge gap between them. Never mind the other considerable differences between the two individuals responsible for founding these two businesses.

4. Got Involved in Financial Services Before Founding the Business

Unsurprisingly, the man who went on to found Edward Jones was involved in financial services beforehand. For example, it is known that he was a bond salesman at one point in time for a business in New York City. Later, he worked as a representative for another business, which saw him moving to Ohio and then to St. Louis. However, it seems that particular position soured on him, seeing as how there was some kind of dispute that arose involving his proceeds from a sale. Something that caused him to leave and then proceed to found his own business bearing his own name in 1922.

5. Edward Jones Had Four Children

In total, Edward Jones is known to have had four children with his wife Ursula Griesedieck. Two of the four were sons named David and Edward D. "Ted" Jones, while the other two were daughters named Ann and Martha. Unfortunately, David died at a young age. Meanwhile, Ted grew up to become involved in the business that his father founded, which is why he is relevant in this context.

6. Edward Jones Was a Very Busy Man

Amusingly, Edward Jones was a very busy man. In part, this is because running a business is never easy. However, it should also be noted that he had responsibilities outside of the business that bore his name as well. In short, his wife's family owned breweries, meaning that for a time, Edward Jones spent his morning working at his own business before heading on over to run the breweries in the afternoon. Naturally, if running one business is a huge hassle, imagine the strain that comes from having to run two at the same time, particularly two businesses that operated in two very different sectors.

7. Insisted on Being First Person in the Office

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Edward Jones had a very strong work ethic, as shown by the fact that he was actually running two different businesses at one point in time. However, there is more evidence of this in how he continued insisting on being the first person into the office even once he had handed off most of the main responsibilities to his son. Something that continued until 1982, which was the year in which Edward Jones died at the age of 89 in 1982 after overseeing a truly massive expansion of the business that still bears his name.

8. Ted Jones Actually Studied Agriculture

While Ted Jones eventually winded up working at his father's business, it is interesting to note that he actually started out studying the subject of agriculture at the University of Missouri. However, that changed after the Second World War, which saw him returning to the University of Missouri before going on to become a page at the New York Stock Exchange. Eventually, Ted Jones ended up a part of Edward Jones in 1948.

9. Ted Jones Created Edward Jones's Signature Model

It was Ted Jones who came up with what is now Edward Jones's signature model of branch offices in both suburbs and rural communities. As a result, Ted deserves a fair amount of the credit for the massive expansion of the business in that part of its existence, seeing as how those branch offices enabled it to reach out to people who had once lacked such convenient access to the kind of financial services that it offered and continues to offer. This is because while modern telecommunications have erased a lot of accessibility issues in modern times, no such thing existed in those days, meaning that the locations of offices would have been critical.

10. Opened First One-Person Branch in Mexico, MO

Ted Jones was the one who oversaw the opening of Edward Jones's very first one-person branch. For those who are curious, this happened in Mexico. To be exact, this happened in Mexico, MO, which is a city in the central part of the state. Then as now, the place had a small population when compared to behemoths such as Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York City. However, it was nonetheless a new market with new clients for Edward Jones.

11. Encountered Some Opposition from His Father

Initially, Ted Jones actually encountered some opposition from his father in regards to the opening of the branch offices. Essentially, the problem was the size of the bill for the teletypewriter line, which was the telecommunication option that had to be used in those times. However, Edward Jones did give Ted Jones the option to keep the branch office open so long as he could find a way to pay for the additional costs.

12. Ted Jones Made Up the Costs By Opening More Branch Offices

Amusingly, Ted Jones's solution to the problem was to open up more branch offices along the teletypewriter line, which was presumably meant to secure more revenues without adding corresponding amounts of expenses in the process. As a result, if people looking into the pattern of Edward Jones's new locations in those times think that it looks like dots along both sides of a line, well, suffice to say that Ted Jones did indeed situate his new branch offices along the teletypewriter line. Regardless, each one of those branch offices represented the ability to tap into new markets with new clients, meaning that they contributed much to the overall process of expansion.

13. Hundreds of Branches By the Early 1980s

To get an idea of just how fast Edward Jones was able to expand, it had managed to reach 495 branches by the time that its founded died in 1982. In this, its expansion rate was helped by the relatively small size of its branches as well as the less hotly contested nature of its chosen markets, seeing how that meant not just low costs but also increased ease of establishment. Under normal circumstances, both of these factors are huge impediments for businesses expanding into new markets that can very easily trip them up.

14. Most Branches Have Two Associates

Even now, most Edward Jones branches have just two associates. One of these two associates is a financial adviser, while the other is a branch office administrator. Besides the benefits that have been mentioned in the previous point, it should be noted that this setup possesses one other major advantage that has expressed itself in modern times, which is the concept of customer service. Essentially, people like being able to speak with a live person face to face when it comes to something as important as their financial future, meaning that having live representatives in an office can be surprisingly useful for a business's effectiveness.

15. Based in Des Peres, MO

It is interesting to note that Edward Jones is headquartered in the city of Des Peres, MO. Said city isn't particularly big, seeing as how it is home to less than ten thousand people. In fact, it isn't unreasonable to say that the headquarters of Edward Jones is probably the single most notable thing about it for most of the people who would bother to look it up.

16. Operates in the United States and Canada

Currently, Edward Jones has numerous branches situated throughout both the United States and Canada, which makes sense considering the close relationship between the two cultures as well as their respective cultures. There was a time when Edward Jones had branches in the United Kingdom as well, but it winded up selling those to Towry Law close to a decade ago.

17. Still Focused on the Same Kind of Clients

For the most part, Edward Jones remains focused on the same two kinds of clients. One kind of client would be individual investors. Meanwhile, the other kind of client would be small business owners. With that said, most isn't the same as always, meaning that Edward Jones has been known to help out other kinds of clients as well. Regardless, the ability to focus on particular clienteles can be very important for businesses, seeing as how it enables them to avoid competition with similar but not quite the same businesses while also making themselves more capable of securing the business of their chosen clienteles. Something that has been known to make or break businesses.

18. It Is a Subsidiary

Technically, Edward Jones is a subsidiary owned by some other business, which would explain why it isn't traded on stock exchanges. As for what owns it, well, that would be a limited liability limited partnership called The Jones Financial Companies, L.L.L.P. Such partnerships consist of one or more general partners as well as one or more limited partners, with general partners having much more say as well as much more responsibility than their limited counterparts. As for why makes up these partners, that would be both past employees and current employees.

19. Believes in More Long-Term Investment

One of Edward Jones's focuses is on long-term investments. In short, it is possible to make money with short-term investments but that tends to need a lot of speculation, which in turn, means a lot of risk. As a result, for people who want reliable returns over a long period of time like, say, most individual investors who are preparing for their futures, this makes a long-term focus on high-quality investments tends to be a better solution. Something that is particularly true because the general direction of the stock market is up even if there can be plenty of short-term dips and dives.

20. Believes in Cultivating Personal Relationships

Edward Jones's focus on having people available for face-to-face interaction should make its interest in outstanding customer service clear to interested parties. However, it should also be noted that this kind of setup is useful for its prioritization of strong personal relationships with its clients. Considering the sheer amount of trust needed between investors and those who have been chosen to serve their needs, this makes sense because a personal relationship is exactly what is needed to build up a sense of trust in an effective and efficient manner.

Garrett Parker

Written by Garrett Parker

Garrett by trade is a personal finance freelance writer and journalist. With over 10 years experience he's covered businesses, CEOs, and investments. However he does like to take on other topics involving some of his personal interests like automobiles, future technologies, and anything else that could change the world.

Read more posts by Garrett Parker

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