Regions Financial (RF) in Birmingham has chosen Prudential Financial (PRU) to be the service provider for its wealth management group divisions that handle institutional and private clients.

The two divisions will use Prudential's open-architecture platform for access to third-party managers in separate-account and unified-managed-account structures. Prudential will also offer the bank access to its due diligence profiles of outside managers, which will be integrated into Regions' in-house due diligence process, said Don Korn, the director of Regions' portfolio management group.

"Our goal is to give our wealth advisors in the field all the tools they need to help our clients achieve their goals. This is another tool that will help us do that," Korn said. Korn cited the Prudential platform's access to unified managed accounts as a valuable innovation and one of its selling points.

The $121 billion-asset Regions said in a news release on Monday that this partnership continues its efforts to expand its wealth management unit. Regions has been restructuring its wealth division following its divestiture of Morgan Keegan early last year. In November, the bank announced a partnership with PrimeVest, a division of Cetera Financial Group, to provide investment and advisory services at all its branches.

"As we continue to expand our wealth management solutions, we are pleased to introduce the latest in portfolio management and technology to help our clients meet their financial goals," Regions wealth management group head Bill Ritter said in the release announcing the Prudential agreement.

Regions began the search for a new platform provider following the sale of Morgan Keegan, which was previously the service provider for the bank's wealth management group, a bank spokeswoman said.

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