Magazine article American Banker

American Century Unit Eyes Growth through Spinoff

Magazine article American Banker

American Century Unit Eyes Growth through Spinoff

Article excerpt

Acumation Inc., the investment technology subsidiary of American Century Inc., says its goal in spinning off from the Kansas City, Mo., mutual fund provider is to draw a wider array of banks and brokerages to its online advisory services.

Kirk Kazanjian, director of investor advisory services for Acumation, said the unit has to be independent if it is to get a bigger market share.

"We are a business-to-business firm, and our only clients thus far are the banks, brokerage firms, and insurers" that are also American Century customers, he said.

The spinoff plan was announced Friday and is scheduled to be completed sometime in February.

Acumation's flagship product, FundAdvisor, lets clients of banks, mutual fund companies, and brokers select mutual fund portfolios to fit their long- and short-term goals. Clients currently can get access to the service, or engine, only through American Century's Web site. By becoming independent, the unit will be able to build custom sites for the institutions that use its services, Mr. Kazanjian said, though FundAdvisor already can be customized to offer recommendations from the fund families the client offers.

Acumation plans to add two online engines by summer, StockAdvisor and Financial Advisor. StockAdvisor will select issues that satisfy an individual's preferences and goals, and FinancialAdvisor will help investors use insurance analysis, estate planning, and investing tools to build a comprehensive money plan. …

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