Magazine article American Banker

To Boost Retail Lines, Key Turns to a Wells Executive

Magazine article American Banker

To Boost Retail Lines, Key Turns to a Wells Executive

Article excerpt

KeyCorp has hired a Wells Fargo & Co. insurance executive to revitalize its retail banking division.

The Cleveland company said Wednesday that Timothy King, the chairman and chief executive officer of Wells Fargo Insurance Inc., would become the president of retail banking operations May 10.

He will report to Jack Kopnisky, the head of Key's consumer banking. In a telephone interview, Mr. Kopnisky said one of Mr. King's first assignments will be to develop and carry out a retail product cross-selling strategy.

A spokesman said Mr. King was not available to comment.

He will oversee a $34.7 billion-deposit retail banking business with more than 900 branches spread out across 12 states. Key plans to add 20 to 25 branches, mainly in Seattle, Denver, Portland, Ore., Indianapolis, as well as Columbus and Cincinnati.

Though Mr. King's most recent experience has been managing the largest bank-owned insurance agency, Mr. Kopnisky said that did not mean Key would give insurance a special emphasis. It will "only be one of the offerings," he said. "I am much more interested in acquiring more clients, bringing more solutions and cross-selling our existing clients, and retaining our existing clients rather than pushing a particular product line."

According to Mr. Kopnisky, Mr. King brings expertise in insurance, retail banking, and bank-based investment programs, as well as a strong mergers and acquisitions background.

Mr. King handled mergers and acquisitions for Norwest Insurance and Norwest Investment Services, units of Norwest Corp., which bought the old Wells Fargo in 1998.

Key's retail strategy will focus on mining customer data for cross-selling opportunities, improving service, and developing a "relentless sales culture," Mr. Kopnisky said. Retail banking generated 30% of its net income last year, and the goal is to expand each of its businesses by 8% to 10% a year, he said. …

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