Fidelity Investments on Wednesday announced changes to its institutional businesses intended to streamline coverage of its RIA, broker-dealer, bank, retirement-plan and turnkey-asset-management clients.
As part of the new structure, Fidelity Institutional has also created dedicated service teams for RIA aggregator firms as well as retirement-plan record-keepers and advisers who sell 401(k)s. The changes are intended to create “the seamlessness we know the market wants,” said Michael Durbin, president of Fidelity Institutional Wealth Services, in an interview.
He pointed to HighTower Advisors LLC as one example of an institutional client dealing with multiple divisions at Fidelity. “Since day one, HighTower was both a clearing and custody client of ours,” he said.
Now coverage of a strategic acquirer like HighTower will be consolidated into Mr. Durbin's IWS unit, which includes Fidelity's RIA custody business, rather than done separately by IWS and Fidelity's clearing unit, National Financial.
Robert Evans, who has served as a regional senior vice president in the RIA custody unit, will lead the strategic-acquirer team and continue to report to Bob Oros, executive vice president of sales and relationship management in Fidelity's custody business. TAMP coverage will also be consolidated in IWS. Before the revamp, these asset managers dealt with both the RIA and clearing units.
Similarly, coverage of financial advisers and third-party administrators who serve the 401(k) market will fall under IWS. Meg Kelleher, executive vice president for sales and relationship management in Fidelity's custody business, will lead the retirement group.
Sanjiv Mirchandani, president of National Financial, is overseeing groups serving broker-dealer and bank clients. Bobbi Masiello, executive vice president and head of relationship management for Fidelity's clearing business, will lead the broker-dealer group. Michael Norton, senior vice president for client experience supporting Fidelity's clearing clients, will lead the bank group.
“Until today, we covered banks from [both] National Financial and IWS,” Mr. Durbin said.
Among Fidelity Institutional's senior leadership, “everyone remains,” Mr. Durbin added. “We're just aligning our talent better with our clients.”
Fidelity is also integrating its technology platform groups into one team, led by Edward O'Brien, currently senior vice president and head of technology for IWS and the Fidelity Family Office Services unit. The expanded role for Mr. O'Brien now includes technology development for National Financial.