Marketing One, a leading bank marketer of investment products, has snared a rare new client - a large banking company that has yet to offer mutual funds and annuities.
The Portland, Ore.-based company said Friday that it would help set up brokerage operations at a $13 billion-asset Standard Federal Bancorp., based in Troy, Mich.
The deal comes less than two months after one of its largest clients, First Fidelity Bancorp., Lawrenceville, N.J., announced that First Union Corp. was buying it.
First Union has yet to say whether it will retain Marketing One, but chances are that like other large banks it will bring investment marketing operations in-house, said Kenneth Kehrer, a consultant in Princeton, N.J.
That means Marketing One stands to lose 20% of the total dollar volume of investment products it helps financial institutions sell, Mr. Kehrer said. In 1994, First Fidelity contributed more than $400 million of the nearly $2 billion in sales of mutual funds and fixed and variable annuities at banks advised by Marketing One.
As part of its new relationship with Standard Federal, Marketing One is going to help the bank hire an executive to lead brokerage operations and recruit and train about 50 brokers to sell mutual funds, annuities, and individual securities.
The bank said it plans to boost its brokerage force to 70 eventually.
Marketing One will also act as the bank's clearing firm, set up the necessary technology, and market the program, said Greg Fouks, Marketing One's vice president, new business development. Mr. Fouks said the program is to begin this fall.
Standard Federal spent a year trying to find a third-party investment marketing company, said the bank's chairman and president, Thomas Ricketts, and it chose Marketing One over five other firms.
He said he liked Marketing One because it was a large company that could compete against Essex Corp., the company that helped set up programs at local rivals NBD Bancorp, Detroit, and Michigan National Corp., Farmington Hills.
But Marketing One's role is limited at Standard Federal, which wants control over its program. "After the training, we expect to be weaned off the system," Mr. Ricketts said.
Standard Federal is beginning its brokerage program late because the bank was busy absorbing 19 acquisitions of banks and mortgage companies made during the past decade, Mr. Ricketts said. Acquisitions have helped Standard Federal build its assets and develop its mortgage business into one of the largest in the country.
Mr. Ricketts acknowledged being "derelict" in not developing an investment program sooner. He declined to offer sales targets.
But Mr. Kehrer said Standard Federal could bring in $200 million a year in sales if each broker produces the standard $4 million of mutual fund and annuity sales.