Banks will soon want to parlay customers' growing comfort with investment products into sales of more esoteric offerings like long-term care programs, a veteran investment products marketer says.
The executive, Jerome R. Corsi, has started a marketing company, Matrix Alliances, to sell such products through banks. Matrix's offerings will range from customized mutual funds to health monitoring services for elderly bank customers.
Mr. Corsi established the Minneapolis company last month, after splitting with his former employer, Bankmark, an investment products marketer in Morris Plains, N.J.
He left Bankmark in July over what he described as differences of opinion with founder and president Robert Leonard. Mr. Leonard has declined to comment on the matter.
Now Mr. Corsi wants his start-up company to "take a very different focus than most bank marketing firms."
In perhaps his most venturesome gambit, Mr. Corsi envisions banks offering care services to older customers. The services, in the form of care advocacy programs, would oversee health, nutrition, and basic living needs.
Mr. Corsi said the service, offered through Case Management Systems Inc., a Minneapolis firm that specializes in elderly services, would be ideal for senior citizens whose estates are overseen by a bank serving as a trustee.
Case Management would assign a social worker to assess the elderly customer's health and basic needs after consulting with the customer and his or her beneficiaries. Banks would receive a share of the program's fees.
Mr. Corsi said he is talking with a couple of financial institutions in the Midwest, but declined to name them.
"It's just a matter of time" before banks and their customers accept the concept, he said.
But others in the industry are not as open to the idea.
Linking trustee services to wellness care is "a stretch," said Marcia Selz, president of Marketing Matrix, a Los Angeles research firm.
"Why would a customer think a bank is an appropriate place for well-care or health care programs?" Ms. Selz said.
Mr. Corsi said Matrix Alliances will also offer banks annuity and insurance programs, initiatives that Ms. Selz believes will gain broader acceptance.
Mr. Corsi said he has also hooked up with Signature Financial Group to offer community banks an asset allocation product for retail customers. The product would invest in various portfolios managed by clients of Signature, a New York-based mutual fund distributor.
Mr. Corsi has experience in developing mutual fund programs. Just before leaving Bankmark, he helped B'nai B'rith offer a family of mutual funds to its members and banks. Mr. Corsi also oversaw brokerage operations during his three years with the marketing firm.
Before his stint at Bankmark, he held top positions at Marketing One and Independent Financial Marketing Group, two of the industry's largest investment product marketing firms.