State Street Corp. is beefing up its estate planning group to advise a growing clientele of newly minted multimillionaires.
To expand the service, State Street Global Advisors, the company's investment management subsidiary, hired a prominent trust and estate attorney.
Deborah Pechet Quinan, most recently a senior manager at Ernst & Young, joined the Boston-based bank this month as vice president and head of the personal asset planning group.
For the accounting firm, Ms. Quinan oversaw the development of an estate and business succession planning practice in New England.
Previously, she was an associate attorney with Mirick, O'Connell, Demallie & Lougee, a law firm in Worcester, Mass.
"This is going to assist our new business efforts," said Eric P. Hayes, chief fiduciary officer and senior trust counsel. "We are delighted to have Deborah, particularly in the area of business succession planning. That's very topical for many entrepreneurs."
Although staffed with attorneys, the estate and business succession planning group does not practice law or draft documents, Mr. Hayes said.
The group works with clients' outside counsel to troubleshoot existing plans and create ones that jibe with the bank's style of investment management.
Mr. Hayes, who joined the bank three years ago, said State Street continues to build its estate planning group to complement the trust and investments division. The asset planning group's two attorneys will report to Ms. Quinan.
"We're getting more calls for service and the market for the service continues to grow," he said. "It ties in with what we do on the investment management side."
State Street, like many peer banks whose trust departments have for decades managed inherited wealth, is growing by positioning itself as a multi-talented financial adviser to entrepreneurial millionaires and executives of public companies.
"One of the fastest growing areas is the small-business owners," said Catherine F. Ellsworth, a senior consultant in the New York office of Spectrem Group. As a result, "there is more and more demand from people wanting their assets to be managed in a tax-efficient manner."
State Street's big-wheel reputation is associated with its prowess as a global custodian and index fund manager.
Although State Street has a long history of managing the wealth of select New England families, the private clients lines are dwarfed by the institutional businesses.
Out of $350 billion of assets under management at State Street, about $8.1 billion is in separate accounts for wealthy individuals.
Many banks, brokerages, and accounting firms are expanding the services to make themselves more marketable.
"It's very helpful to put out programs and products, because they want to know they don't have to go to one place for one service," Ms. Ellsworth said. "They want to know that the people helping them along through this process can help them with their plans."