Mutual fund company Franklin Resources Inc. has promoted Joseph L. Epstein Jr. to financial institutions sales manager overseeing sales through banks in the eastern half of the country.

Franklin, which is based in San Mateo, Calif., said Mr. Epstein will also act as a key accounts manager for several client banks. He will be based in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Mr. Epstein was a wholesaler, or sales representative, in the bank division.

He fills a slot left vacant by Michael Rom, formerly an assistant national sales manager, who left the company in October. Mr. Rom, who was considered a top producer for the company, was hired away by insurance giant Equitable Cos. as a national sales manager for banks.

Franklin, which manages $137 billion of assets, is a leading seller of funds through banks.

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