Retirement Industry People Moves

Northern Trust names foreign exchange sales head; MassMutual adds head of benefits practice; Transamerica implements series of promotions; and more.

Art by Subin Yang

Art by Subin Yang

Northern Trust Names Foreign Exchange Sales Head

Northern Trust has announced that Ernesto Arteta has been named head of foreign exchange sales, Americas.

Arteta has over 25 years of experience in sales, trading, structuring and portfolio management of fixed income and foreign exchange cash and derivatives. Based in Chicago, he will lead a team of sales managers located in the Americas responsible for driving growth through Northern Trust’s range of FX solutions for institutional investors and investment managers across the region.

MassMutual Adds Head of Benefits Practice

MassMutual has appointed a new leader for its voluntary and executive benefits businesses in support of employers and their employees.

Shefali Desai has been named head of worksite, a new position reporting to Teresa Hassara, head of workplace solutions for MassMutual. Desai, a 19-year veteran of MassMutual, is now responsible for management and ongoing development of the full worksite portfolio, including voluntary benefits and executive benefits. Worksite provides protection benefits such as life, disability, critical illness and accident insurance through employers.

As head of worksite, Desai will focus on the end-to-end customer journey, including web experience, underwriting process, operations, client acquisition and customer communications.

Previously, Desai had led MassMutual’s workplace strategy. She has also held leadership roles in retirement plan sales management, customer support roles, financial management, and mergers and acquisitions

A graduate of Babson College, Desai holds Series 7, 24 and 63 FINRA registrations.

Transamerica Implements Series of Promotions   

Transamerica has announced that Blake Bostwick will lead its workplace solutions business line as president. Transamerica’s workplace solutions team provides employer-sponsored retirement plans and insurance benefits to U.S. organizations of all sizes.

Bostwick is a 17-year veteran with Transamerica, and has previously led multiple functional areas for Transamerica, including operations, marketing, product and technology. In his new role, he will continue reporting to Mark Mullin, Transamerica president and CEO.

Bostwick is joined by Kent Callahan, who will lead workplace solutions distribution and client engagement as senior managing director. Callahan managed Transamerica’s retirement plans team from 2003 to 2015, and the employee benefits team from 2009 to 2012. He previously oversaw a portfolio of U.S. businesses and Latin American joint ventures. Callahan will report to Bostwick in his new role.

Also reporting to Bostwick, Phil Eckman has been named chief operating officer of workplace solutions. Eckman is a 23-year veteran of the organization, who most recently headed Transamerica’s customer experience and advice center. Eckman now will expand his responsibilities to lead workplace solutions operations.

Ascensus Renames TPA Solutions Group

Ascensus has announced that its TPA Solutions group will become FuturePlan by Ascensus.

FuturePlan by Ascensus will encompass 42 locations throughout the country and service more than 34,000 plans with 30 different recordkeeping partners. The group’s expertise includes defined contribution plans, defined benefit traditional and cash balance plans, employee stock ownership plans, specialty plans, and 3(16) fiduciary services.

“FuturePlan by Ascensus gives advisers and plan sponsors a new way of thinking about retirement plan administration,” says Jerry Bramlett, who heads the group. “We’re able to provide high-touch, local service backed by the tremendous resources of a large national organization, including a deep bench of talent, significant ongoing technology investments, data security infrastructure, in-house ERISA expertise, and many other advantages.”

Insight Investment Creates Consultant Head Role

Insight Investment has announced that Jon Morgan is now head of Consultant Relations, North America, a newly-created role. Morgan will help develop Insight’s consultant relationships as the firm responds to pension plan sponsors seeking strategies for liability and liquidity needs. He will also cover consultant-supported platforms and retail offerings.

“In addition to supporting defined benefit solutions, Jon will play a key role in building consultant advocacy for Insight’s fixed income and multi-asset strategies such as Core Plus and Broad Opportunities,” says Jack Boyce, head of Distribution for North America at Insight. Insight’s business has been built on a reputation for investment quality, demonstrated by the fact more than 80% of our global assets under management are consultant-intermediated. We rely on consultants to undertake the deep analysis required to identify what differentiates a leading manager from a good one.”

“In my view, there are few asset managers who can have a conversation about LDI on the same level as Insight,” says Morgan. “We believe plans are becoming more liability-aware and interested in approaches making use of customized benchmarks, derivatives and new cash-flow management strategies. In the retail market, there is opportunity for a manager that can provide fresh ideas for the future, particularly around outcome-oriented approaches to investing in core asset classes such as fixed income and multi-asset.”

Morgan joins from BlackRock where he was most recently director of Global Consultant Relations. He will be based in New York and report to Paul Hamilton, global head of Consultant Relations.

Nationwide Increases Distribution and Sales Team with New Hires  

Nationwide has expanded its distribution and sales team with two new hires.  

Scott Ramey is joining Nationwide’s retirement plans business to lead efforts serving and expanding relationships with the company’s existing public-sector partners and plan sponsors. He will report to Eric Stevenson, who continues to lead all distribution and sales efforts for Nationwide’s retirement plan business and was recently promoted to senior vice president.

Ramey has more than 25 years of experience in financial services, most recently as senior vice president of workplace solutions at Transamerica. Prior to that role, he led institutional sales for Transamerica.

The second addition to the team is Jennifer Yellot, who will serve as a client acquisition director, reporting to Rob Bilo. Yellot will oversee large, public-sector acquisitions in the Midwest United States. She joins Nationwide with over 15 years of experience in retirement plan sales. Most recently, she served as a vice president of tax-exempt sales at Prudential. Prior to working at Prudential, she held sales roles at Aspire, Transamerica and Empower.

Ramey received his undergraduate degree from John Carroll University, and holds Series 7, 24, 26, 63, Life, Accident and Health licenses. Yellot has a bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University. Additionally, she holds FINRA Series 6, 63, and 26 licenses.

SMA Executive Joins Franklin Templeton

Franklin Templeton has hired Brian Silverman as its new head of separately managed accounts (SMAs). Reporting to Pierre Caramazza, head of the U.S. financial institutions group, Silverman will be responsible for overseeing business development and strategy for the firm’s U.S. SMA business. He will lead a team servicing the SMA business and partnering with the broader U.S. distribution group, as well as with marketing, product development and investment management.

Silverman has over 25 years of experience in financial services, with a focus on the managed accounts industry. He joins from BlackRock Financial, where he spent the past 11 years focusing on platform and product development in the SMA business line, and previously held positions at Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Silverman earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Muhlenberg College and his master’s in finance from Fordham University Gabelli School of Business.