Cetera Financial Group Completes Development of Comprehensive Retirement Plan Solutions Platform for Advisors

Rollout and Expansion of Multiple Retirement Plan Advice Solutions and Services to Position Cetera-Affiliated Retirement Plan Advisors to Succeed in Post-DOL Fiduciary Rule Environment

15 Mar, 2016, 09:00 ET from Cetera Financial Group

LOS ANGELES, March 15, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Cetera Financial Group® (Cetera), a leading network of independent broker-dealer firms, announced today that it is finished developing the core of its comprehensive retirement plan solutions platform for financial advisors. Cetera's ongoing investment in its retirement plan solutions offering demonstrates its commitment to helping its financial advisors with their retirement plan businesses, and provides another example of Cetera's ability to utilize its resources and scale to make innovative services available to financial advisors across its network.

Significant objectives achieved during this process include:

  • Successful rollout of Cetera's Guided Retirement Solutions web portal to all of its broker-dealers
  • Continued development of retirement plan data aggregation and practice management technology through the company's strategic partnership with Envestnet
  • Network-wide launch of Cetera's integrated ERISA plan consulting team and Third Party Administrator (TPA)
  • Further expansion of Cetera's Retirement Practice Consulting team
  • Successful rollout of industry-wide program to include many of the most prominent partners in the retirement plan industry.

Brett Harrison, Executive Vice President for Advisor Growth at Cetera Financial Group and Chief Executive Officer of Cetera Advisors, commented, "Winning and retaining retirement plan business requires specialized knowledge, skills and technology, especially with significant regulatory changes right around the corner. Cetera Financial Group's expanded retirement plan solutions platform positions our advisors to succeed in capturing these opportunities by providing them with the tools, training, and services they need to build or strengthen their retirement plan practices, including extensive support for advisors who function as fiduciaries or will be transitioning to the fiduciary model."

Guided Retirement Solutions Web Portal and Enhanced Retirement Solutions Technology Offerings

The Cetera Guided Retirement Solutions (GRS) web portal is a robust online resource built to provide retirement plan-focused advisors with marketing materials, training, white papers and other tools to help them identify, win and service retirement plan clients. The portal walks advisors through five key aspects of the retirement plan services market in order to help advisors build their skills and grow their businesses, whether they are established experts or new to the sector. These five areas include Advisor Education, Marketing, Prospecting, Closing Business, and Service and Retention. Cetera's Guided Retirement Solutions portal is currently available to the entire Cetera Financial Group family of firms.

The expansion of Cetera's retirement plan solutions platform also includes further development of the company's retirement plan data aggregation and practice management technology through its strategic partnership with Envestnet. Advisors who act as fiduciaries for retirement plan clients have access to a consolidated dashboard that allows them to view their entire retirement plan business at once, while also feeding industry-leading due diligence tools; robust analytics capabilities including investment comparisons, benchmarking, and others; investment policy statement generation and a broad range of additional practice management features. Envestnet also provides Cetera with in-depth data aggregation to help the company track and analyze retirement plan data across its network.

ERISA Plan Consulting Team and Integrated Third Party Administrator

The company's effort to provide advisors with best-in-class, comprehensive retirement plan solutions also includes the rollout of Cetera Retirement Plan Specialists, an ERISA plan consulting firm and a dedicated Third Party Administrator (TPA). Formerly known as First Allied Retirement Services and available only to First Allied advisors in the Cetera Financial Group network, the group is now seamlessly integrated with Cetera advisors' retirement services practices in order to help them address complex plan design and administration challenges, evaluate their existing TPA service providers, and win new retirement plan business.

Expanded Retirement Practice Consulting Team & Retirement Plan Partners Program

Cetera has also expanded its Retirement Practice Consulting team, hiring industry veterans Ruben Ramirez as Manager of the Retirement Practice Consulting Team and George Barker as Retirement Plan Partner Relations Manager. The Retirement Practice Consulting team works with Cetera advisors to help them develop and execute strategic game plans for expanding their retirement plan businesses, and provides extensive expertise on best practices and product information. In addition to leading this team, Mr. Ramirez' responsibilities also include the continued development of the Guided Retirement Solutions tool. The Retirement Plan Partners program, managed by Mr. Barker, helps bring best-in-class tools and products from across the industry directly to the advisors who need them. The due diligence process is embedded in the program, giving advisors confidence in the resources they utilize for their business. Mr. Barker also manages non-strategic retirement plan product relationships and retirement plan technology partner relationships.

Jon Anderson, Director of Cetera Retirement Solutions, said, "Our Retirement Solutions team is continuously broadening its industry-leading capabilities. With Cetera's unparalleled ability to draw on resources, best practices and expertise from across the network for the benefit of its advisors, as well as a strong relationship with Envestnet and a commitment to serving advisors in the retirement plan space, we have assembled a suite of services that we expect will position our advisors for long-term success in this market. Bringing a depth of scale, resources, leading partnerships and expertise to this space is more important than ever before in order to help retirement plan-focused advisors grow and succeed in a post-DOL environment."

About Cetera Financial Group
Cetera Financial Group is a leading network of independent retail broker-dealers empowering the delivery of objective financial advice to investors across the country through trusted financial advisors and financial institutions. The network is comprised of ten firms - four legacy Cetera-branded firms (Cetera Advisors, Cetera Advisor Networks, Cetera Investment Services, marketed as Cetera Financial Institutions, and Cetera Financial Specialists) along with First Allied Securities, Investors Capital Corporation, Legend Equities Corporation, Summit Brokerage, VSR Financial Services and Girard Securities.

Cetera Financial Group is the second largest independent financial advisor network in the nation by number of advisors, as well as a leading provider of retail services to the investment programs of banks and credit unions. Cetera Financial Group delivers award-winning wealth management and advisory platforms, comprehensive broker-dealer and registered investment adviser services, and innovative technology to over 9,000 independent financial professionals and over 500 financial institutions nationwide. Through its distinct firms, Cetera Financial Group offers the benefits of a large, established broker-dealer and registered investment advisor, while serving independent and institutions-based financial advisors in a way that is customized to their needs and aspirations. Cetera Financial Group is committed to helping advisors grow their businesses and strengthen their relationships with clients. For more information, visit www.ceterafinancialgroup.com.

Media Contact:

Joseph Kuo
Haven Tower Group
Tel: 424.652.6520 Ext 101
jkuo@haventower.com

Matthew Griffes
Haven Tower Group
Tel: 424.652.6520 Ext 103   
mgriffes@haventower.com

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SOURCE Cetera Financial Group



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