Our History

A tradition of commitment since 1894 • a legacy of putting clients first.

Early Investors Syndicate logo

1894

John Tappan, age 24, founds Investors Syndicate.

1,000 people invest $5 each.

Profile image of John Tappan, founder of Investors Syndicate
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1914

Assets reach $1 million.

Early Investors Syndicate Certificate

1925

West Coast entrepreneur John R. Ridgeway purchases Investors Syndicate from founder John Tappan and his partners.

Men waiting in line during the Great Depression

1929

During the decade of the Great Depression (1929-1939), Investors Syndicate pays out every dollar on its due date – a total of $101 million to its certificate holders. Assets under management grow from $28 million to $153 million.

Stock market crashes.

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1937

Assets reach $100 million.

Investors Mutual Fund logo

1940

Investors Syndicate enters the mutual fund market with Investors Mutual Fund. Investors Stock Fund and Investors Selective fund follow in 1945.

Ruth Abrahamson, top U.S. sales representative

1946

Ruth Abrahamson joins the company in 1946 and later becomes the number one female sales representative in the country.

Investors Diversified Services logo

1949

Investors Syndicate changes its name to Investors Diversified Services.

Group of investors from 1957

1957

Investors Syndicate Life Insurance and Annuity Company is formed (renamed IDS Life Insurance Company in 1973).

Grady Clark poses next to chart representing $3 billion in sales.

1960

Grady Clark becomes president – the only IDS president from the field force. Under Clark’s watch the IDS sales organization evolves into a highly integrated national network.

Harvey Golub sitting cross-legged on the floor

1984

American Express Company acquires IDS for $780 million.

Harvey Golub becomes President and CEO of IDS Financial Services.

1986

IDS acquires Wisconsin Employers Casualty Company of Green Bay and renames it IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company.

Alex Alexander, top sales representative for 45 years, with a big smile.

1989

The Alex Alexander award was created in memory of the company’s long-term top producer. Alex M. Alexander. Mr. Alexander led the company in sales for more than 45 years of his 51-year career. His legacy is honored every year as we recognize our top sales leader.

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1994

Assets reach $100 billion.

Two employees hold a banner in celebration of 100-year anniversary.

IDS celebrates 100-year anniversary.

American Express Financial Advisors logo

1995

IDS changes its name to American Express Financial Advisors (AEFA).

James Cracchiolo in a business suit.

2000

James Cracchiolo becomes President and CEO of AEFA, succeeding David Hubers.

2002

AEFA acquires Dynamic Ideas, LLC, the quantitative platform RiverSource Investments.

Threadneedle logo

2003

AEFA increases its international presence by acquiring Threadneedle, a leading British investment firm.

Ameriprise Financial logo

New York Stock Exchange with Ameriprise Financial banner during NYSE Opening Bell.

Riversource logo

2005

Ameriprise Financial becomes an independent, publicly owned company with more than 12,000 advisors and registered representatives and more than 2.7 million individual, business and institutional clients.

AMP begins trading on NYSE (October 3).

James Cracchiolo becomes Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Ameriprise Financial.

Riversource logo

As part of the company’s branch launch, Ameriprise Financial announces the RiverSource brand, covering the product, investment and distribution businesses.

 

2006

The company introduces our unique Dream > Plan > Track >® client experience.

2007

The company enters the FORTUNE® 5001 at 297.

Seligman Investments logo

H&R Block Financial Advisors logo

2008

Ameriprise Financial acquires J. & W. Seligman and H&R Block Financial Advisors.

Global economic crisis drives broad stock market declines.

When the Reserve Fund “broke the buck” in one of its money market funds and freezes assets, Ameriprise Financial responds by advancing $700 million to help meet clients’ immediate cash needs and developing extensive market volatility resources for advisors.

Feeding America logo

2009

Ameriprise Financial announced a charitable partnership with Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization.

Columbia Management logo

2010

With the Columbia Management acquisition, Ameriprise Financial becomes the eighth-largest manager of long-term U.S. mutual fund assets.

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Ameriprise Financial owned, managed and administered assets reach $600 billion.

The Confident Retirement triangle shows the four key areas of the Confident Retirement approach: covering essentials, ensuring lifestyle, preparing for the unexpected and leaving a legacy.

2014

Ameriprise Financial earned the second highest trust rating as well as the highest forgiveness rating in investment industry by Temkin Rating. 2

The Confident Retirement triangle shows the four key areas of the Confident Retirement approach: covering essentials, ensuring lifestyle, preparing for the unexpected and leaving a legacy.

Ameriprise Financial launches its exclusive Confident Retirement® approach nationally.

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Assets Under Management and Administration exceed $800 billion.

2015

Columbia Threadneedle Investments logo

2015

Launch of Columbia Threadneedle Investments brand.

Be Brilliant logo

New brand platform launches.