Wit Capital Corp., the first on-line investment bank, has lured several high-powered Wall Street executives to its roster.
Ronald Readmond, 55, formerly a vice chairman at Charles Schwab & Co. and a director of Wit Capital, was named president and chief operating officer.
Wit Capital entered uncharted waters when it began promoting the Internet as a venue for raising venture capital and investing in securities. The two-year-old start-up now is developing a digital stock market that would let retail investors trade Nasdaq-listed shares directly with one another.
Mr. Readmond, as a member of the Group of 30 committee on securities clearing, was instrumental in helping the industry move to a trading environment in which securities are settled within three days of a trade.
Mr. Readmond, who will manage Wit Capital's day-to-day operations, said, "The opportunity to join full-time and play an active role in redefining corporate finance for the 21st century was simply too appealing."
Wit Capital has also hired William Tkacs-a former Salomon Smith Barney investment banker and founder of a private capital-raising concern for Cowen & Co.-as its head of private equity.
Matthew Carbone, a former senior vice president at Salomon Smith Barney, has joined Wit Capital as a senior investment banker. He and his staff will focus on initial public offerings and merger-related advisory services.
Robert H. Lessin, a former vice chairman at Salomon Smith Barney, joined Wit as chairman in April. He heads the company and runs the investment banking operations.
Andrew D. Klein, Wit Capital's founder and chief strategist, said the company just completed its third round of venture capital financing, raising $20 million to date. The funding will be used for general purposes, such as marketing, research, and salaries.