Fifth Third Bank has hired a national sales manager for its $4.8 billion mutual fund family.

Richard Ille joined the Cincinnati bank two weeks ago from Bisys Group Inc. in Little Falls, N.J., where he worked in the client services unit, said Scott N. Degerberg, a Fifth Third vice president.

Mr. Ille is responsible for managing Fifth Third's internal distribution channels, as well as building relationships with third-party broker-dealers, Mr. Degerberg said.

The bank distributes the funds primarily through its 160 Series 7 brokers, as well through its personal trust division, Mr. Degerberg said.

Fifth Third is also licensing Series 6 or platform brokers that would sell the funds through bank branches, Mr. Degerberg said.

But, he added, "We would like to have outside relationships."

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