State Street Global Advisors, one of the biggest players in the retirement plan business, has launched an image campaign it hopes will give the unit more clout with investors and business prospects.
As part of the initiative, the unit of State Street Boston Corp. has struck a deal with Time Warner Inc. to distribute a forthcoming series of books about personal financial planning.
State Street has also rolled out a new logo under which it has standardized the marketing and presentation materials of its mutual fund, pension, 401(k), and high-net-worth businesses. The logo is fashioned out of the unit's initials, SSgA, with a blue globe replacing part of the lower-case "g."
"We've been working toward creating an identity so that all of our businesses speak in one voice and can compete more effectively with other money managers," said Nicholas A. Lopardo, chief executive of the global advisors unit.
The campaign has been in the works since January 1995, when the $25.8 billion-asset banking company consolidated its investment businesses under the banner of State Street Global Advisors.
The unit now has more than $252 billion under management and is the largest manager of tax-exempt managed assets in the country.
Clark T. Kellogg, a principal at the State Street unit, said the campaign would save money by eliminating duplication and would help focus the company's marketing.
For instance, he said, customer data bases used by the pension and 401(k) businesses will be merged and also shared with the division marketing to high-net-worth customers.
"It's cultural housekeeping," Mr. Kellogg said. "Every State Street employee, whether in San Francisco or London, will work off the same platform."
State Street also hopes to earn more cachet with investors by featuring the company's name in a six-book series called Your Money Matters, published by Time-Life.
The books - meant to teach basic investing, estate planning, and home financing, among other things - will be sent free to participants in the 401(k) and pension plans State Street manages; Time-Life will also sell it by mail and in bookstores.
Les Dinkin, managing principal of NBW Consulting Group Inc., Westport, Conn., said State Street is "clearly making a major investment in integrating its communications."
The campaign, he added, would put State Street's marketing "money behind one name and attract more assets for the same buck."