ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. - Centura Banks Inc. has reorganized its brokerage, asset management, and private banking operations into a new wealth management division.

Ed Hipp, who had run Centura's brokerage subsidiary, took over as head of the division Tuesday.

Kel Landis 3d, the president of Centura's bank subsidiary, said the bank is trying to take a more "unified" approach to wealth management. "We're really looking for Ed to be a master integrator," he said.

Mr. Hipp, 52, said the new structure would make Centura more competitive with other full-service financial providers.

"At Centura, we have worked reasonably well together," he said. "But if you have three groups reporting to three different folks, there's going to be some disconnect."

Many banking companies - including Bank One Corp. of Chicago, Citigroup Inc. of New York, and SouthTrust Corp. of Birmingham, Ala. - have consolidated private banking, trust, and brokerage. It is generally seen as a way to lessen the effect of "silos" and to encourage cross-selling.

Mr. Hipp said it was too early to say exactly how he would integrate the divisions, each of which has its own sales force. Bob Nadler took over Mr. Hipp's role as president of Centura Securities. Mr. Nadler had been a regional sales manager for the brokerage.

Centura has about $4.3 billion of assets under management, including $650 million in its proprietary mutual fund family.

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