Magazine article American Banker

Federated Shifts Gears for Selling to Clients That Have Merged

Magazine article American Banker

Federated Shifts Gears for Selling to Clients That Have Merged

Article excerpt

By GARMHAUSEN, STEPHEN

With some of its biggest bank and brokerage clients merging, Federated Investors is fine-tuning the way its sales force serves the melded companies.

The Pittsburgh mutual fund company has begun breaking down the walls between the sales groups that cater to large banks and brokerages, said Tony Fadool, national sales manager. The aim is to avoid overlaps in marketing Federated's funds and in providing training and support to brokers.

Federated's move echoes Fidelity Investments' decision last summer to restructure its sales approach for major companies in response to convergence in the financial services industry.

Federated clients that have merged in the past year include U.S. Bancorp, which bought Piper Jaffray Cos.; First Union Corp., which bought Wheat First Butcher Singer Inc.; KeyCorp, which bought McDonald & Company Investments; Wachovia Corp., which bought Interstate/Johnson Lane Inc.; and PNC Bank Corp., which bought Hilliard & Lyons.

Mr. Fadool said U.S. Bancorp/Piper Jaffray is the most pressing case right now. The merged company is moving its combined brokerage force into Piper Jaffray branches.

Federated had relationships with both partners. It will let the most successful sales executives, whether from the bank or brokerage sales staff, deal with the merged entity, Mr. Fadool said.

"We've decided that where we have the strongest relationships, that wholesaler will cover" the institution.

This approach will be the template for future realignments of its sales force, Mr. Fadool added. However, he said, Federated is not pushing its approach. Rather, he said, the company would take its cues from other clients if and when they begin merging their sales forces.

Federated will continue to use the traditional approach with smaller banks, Mr. Fadool said. And key account managers for given institutions will remain in place. …

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