Jackson National Life Cos. has raided top investment-products marketing firms to field a sales team that will market insurance products through financial institutions.

Stephen O'Neill jumped ship from Liberty Financial, where he was a regional vice president for the Boston investment products marketer. At Jackson National, Mr. O'Neill will serve as a regional director overseeing the eastern part of the U.S.

Jackson National also wooed Ralph Allen from GNA Corp., to serve as regional director overseeing the Midwest.

And Peter Weir has joined the Lansing, Mich., company as director of sales administration, overseeing home-office support for the Atlanta-based financial institutions group.

Mr. Weir had been running bank programs for Richard Leahy Corp., an investment-products marketing firm owned by Lincoln National Life Insurance Co.

Brad Powell oversees Jackson National's bank push as vice president of the financial group. Mr. Powell was hired last spring from Liberty Financial's sister company, Keyport Life Insurance Co., where he directed annuity sales through financial institutions.

Jackson National is further supporting the bank group by redefining the duties of several existing employees.

Brent Field has shifted from institutional marketing manager to director of life insurance sales through financial institutions.

And three current Jackson National employees, Paul Hamzey, Sharon McGowan, and Kimberly Bullock, are moving into regional director positions, where they will be responsible for marketing annuities through banks.

With strong backgrounds in banking and insurance, the employees "are a terrific asset to us," Mr. Powell said.

The company now has the foundation to sell $500 million of annuities and life insurance through banks by the end of 1995, and $1 billion of the products by year-end 1997, he said.

Jackson National is the latest insurer to charge into financial institutions. American Skandia this year hired Alan Blank, ex-vice chairman at Liberty Financial, to oversee its bank initiative. Skandia, based in Shelton, Conn., also brought on several regional managers to support him. Bank South Corp. At a Glance Headquarters: AtlantaAssets: $4.6 billionBrokerage: Bank South Investment Services Inc.Proprietary mutual funds: Peach Tree FundsAssets under management: $355 million

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