John Hancock Announces Strategic Development Partnership with Vertical Management Systems

May 28, 2015, 16:00 ET from John Hancock Retirement Plan Services

BOSTON, May 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- John Hancock Retirement Plan Services (JHRPS) announced today that it is entering into a new strategic, multi-phased development agreement with Vertical Management Systems (VMS) of Pasadena, California. The goal of the strategic partnership is to leverage VMS's industry-leading trust accounting and trading systems expertise, applying their innovative solutions and technology to bring sophisticated participant revenue levelization for a variety of investment vehicles (mutual funds, ETFs, CITs) as a future option on the John Hancock's Total Retirement Solutions (TRS) record keeping platform. The TRS platform, which supports total retirement outsourcing of DB, DC and Executive compensation plans, was recently acquired by John Hancock with its purchase of The New York Life Retirement Plan Services business.

"From the very early days of the planning for the New York Life RPS acquisition, we recognized that both John Hancock and New York Life were working with VMS separately on different projects, with both organizations benefitting from the strategic value of the VMS technology and capabilities," said Peter Gordon, CEO, JHRPS. "As our organizations have come together, we have worked with VMS, creating an important development roadmap to leverage that strategic value and bring measurable benefits to our customers and their employees."

"Our strategic partnership with John Hancock has been extremely important for the growth of VMS and the development of our technology. We're very pleased to be expanding our relationship with John Hancock in recognition of the value that we've been able to bring to one of our largest and most important client relationships. VMS is a big believer in participant level revenue levelization, and we're particularly excited about the innovative work we are doing together in this area," said Kevin Rafferty, President and CEO of VMS.

The result of a strategic platform review undertaken with the acquisition, this multi-year development agreement is expected to bring new capabilities and options to clients of John Hancock's Total Retirement Solutions business, including sophisticated participant revenue levelization to multiple investment vehicles. Additionally, the agreement extends and reinforces the organization's partnership with VMS as they continue to support TRS trust and trading sub systems. As part of this agreement, resources currently deployed on the development of the nascent record keeping system underlying the JH Enterprise, open architecture 401(k) solution will be redeployed to the new project, with the sophisticated record keeping system that currently supports the Total Retirement Solutions platform, also being adopted as the foundation for JH Enterprise. John Hancock will work closely with the handful of existing JH Enterprise clients to ensure a smooth and beneficial transition to this new, more robust system.

John Hancock Retirement Plan Services is an industry leader in helping more than 2.6 million individuals realize the retirement futures they have promised themselves by providing retirement plans to over 55,000 businesses, from small business startups to total retirement outsourced solutions for very large businesses around the United States.

About John Hancock Financial and Manulife
John Hancock Financial is a division of Manulife, a leading Canada-based financial services group with principal operations in Asia, Canada and the United States. Operating as Manulife in Canada and Asia, and primarily as John Hancock in the United States, our group of companies offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and wealth management services through its extensive network of employees, agents and distribution partners.  Assets under management by Manulife and its subsidiaries were C$821 billion (US$648 billion) as at March 31, 2015. Manulife Financial Corporation trades as 'MFC' on the TSX, NYSE and PSA, and under '945' on the SEHK. Manulife can be found on the Internet at

The John Hancock unit, through its insurance companies, comprises one of the largest life insurers in the United States. John Hancock offers and administers a broad range of financial products, including life insurance, annuities, investments, 401(k) plans, long-term care insurance, college savings, and other forms of business insurance. Additional information about John Hancock may be found at

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