Charles Schwab, the chairman and founder of Charles Schwab Corp , is recuperating from successful heart valve replacement surgery, the largest U.S. discount brokerage said on Monday.

Schwab, 73, is resting comfortably following Friday's surgery and expects to return home in the next few days, Chief Executive Walter Bettinger said in a statement.

Matt Hurwitz, a company spokesman, had no additional comment.

Charles Schwab is a pioneer in the discount brokerage industry, which gives small investors direct access to Wall Street by charging lower fees than full-service brokerages.

He has been chairman of Schwab since the company was incorporated in 1986, and his influence is reflected in the Talk to Chuck advertising slogan, begun in 2005.

Discount brokerages typically execute orders on behalf of investors who decide on their own what to buy and sell.

According to Schwab's website, Charles Schwab started the San Francisco-based company as a traditional brokerage in 1971, and entered the discount brokerage business three years later.

He returned as sole chief executive in 2004, replacing David Pottruck, to restore investor confidence after the company's profit, revenue and stock price fell. Bettinger succeeded Schwab as chief executive in 2008.

Charles Schwab is the 83rd-richest American, worth $3.7 billion, Forbes magazine said in September.

Schwab said it ended November with $1.51 trillion of client assets, up 8 percent from a year earlier, and 7.95 million active brokerage accounts. It has more than 300 offices.

Shares of Schwab rose 10 cents to $17.12 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel. Editing by Robert MacMillan)