ING U.S. Investment Management Expands its 529 Presence; Named Program Manager of Iowa’s Advisor-Sold College Savings Plan
ING U.S. Investment Management (ING U.S. IM) announced that effective in March it became program manager for the advisor-sold portion of the state of Iowa’s IAdvisor 529 Plan. In this role, the firm handles all investment, product, marketing, sales and distribution, customer service and recordkeeping for the program. ING U.S. IM assumed a similar role for the $1.3 billion Wisconsin Advisor-Sold Program, Tomorrow’s Scholar, in November 2012.
“We are extremely pleased to have been selected to manage the IAdvisor 529 Plan,” said Mark Spina, head of Intermediary Distribution at ING U.S. IM. “This strategic win builds on our momentum in the advisor-sold 529 marketplace, which commenced when we were named program manager of the advisor-sold Wisconsin Tomorrow’s Scholar 529 Program last November. We believe that, given our expertise managing retirement assets, we are well suited to serve the needs for college savings, which surveys indicate is the biggest concern of investors. Our mission is to help advisors and their clients meet their investment objectives with confidence.”
Spina added that effective support and education is important for financial advisors seeking to initiate and build 529 client relationships. To that end, ING U.S. IM’s 529 website showcases the customized tools that empower advisors to better assist clients and prospects in understanding and embracing 529 plans as effective vehicles for college savings.
“We want to make it easier for advisors to utilize 529 solutions with their client base,” added Spina. “We believe there is significant opportunity for advisors to introduce college savings programs in the years ahead. 529s have not yet been tapped by a significant portion of the population, and we believe the combination of more favorable demographics, rising college costs and the plan’s intrinsic tax and estate planning advantages will make it increasingly important for advisors to guide investors to utilize 529s for this significant long-term investment objective.”
ING U.S. IM’s 529 investment programs are built on efficiency and flexibility. Advisors can choose from age-based funds, static allocation options, and a diversified mix of individual funds. Advisors can also customize solutions based on individual circumstances. The underlying funds are managed by the firm as well as by other leading asset managers. All of the 529 portfolio options are overseen by ING U.S. IM’s Multi Asset Strategies and Solutions (MASS) team, a leader in multi-manager, multi-asset investment strategies.
“529 plans are such an effective vehicle to help parents pay for their children’s higher education because of their tax advantages, including tax-exempt growth of any earnings,” said John Uricchio, senior vice president of Distribution at ING U.S. IM. “Our 529 programs include a wide range of investment choices from multiple managers, age and risk-based options, and modified share classes to make it easier for advisors to match their compensation choices to investor needs.”
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About ING U.S.
ING U.S. constitutes the U.S.-based retirement, investment and insurance businesses of Netherlands-based ING Groep N.V. (NYSE: ING). Through the ING U.S. family of companies, we serve the financial needs of approximately 13 million individual and institutional customers with a comprehensive array of products and services, including retirement plans, IRA rollovers and transfers, stable value, institutional investment management, mutual funds, alternative investments, life insurance, employee benefits, fixed and indexed annuities and financial planning. Our dedicated workforce of more than 7,000 employees is focused on ING U.S.’s mission to make a secure financial future possible—one person, one family and one institution at a time. For more information, visit http://ing.us.
About ING U.S. Investment Management
ING U.S. Investment Management (ING U.S. IM) is a leading active asset management firm. As of December 31, 2012, ING U.S. IM manages approximately $183 billion for both affiliated and external institutions as well as individual investors. ING U.S. IM has the experience and resources to invest responsibly across asset classes, geographies and investment styles. We provide clients with access to domestic, regional and global investment solutions.