TIAA-CREF is shaking up its asset management arm to add a sales and product strategy to the mix. The New York City-based fund firm has created a new Asset Management group that combines investment management, distribution and product development under the leadership of Scott C. Evans. Meanwhile, the firm also tapped Ed Grzybowski as its new chief investment officer to replace Evans in that role.
TIAA-CREF has been struggling for nearly a decade to break out of the academic and medical industries that it has long dominated and build a franchise in the retail investment arena. In recent years it has focused on building a sales force to reach the advisor market and lassoed Herb Allison from Merrill Lynch as its CEO.
These latest moves are designed to create a distinct business unit inside the firm to focus on creating TIAA-CREF branded asset management products and to bring the sales and investment arms together under one leader, according to TIAA-CREF officials. The new group will oversee the firm's $370 billion in managed assets.
The newly named Asset Management area combines TIAA-CREF's investment management capabilities with sales, product development and support service resources. The organization's institutional asset management operation, TIAA-CREF Asset Management, is also part of the new business area.
"By integrating investments with the business side of asset management we can be more flexible and responsive to our customers long-term investing needs," Evans explained.
Evans is a veteran of more than two decades at TIAA-CREF, which he joined in 1985 as an investment analyst. Earlier in his career he oversaw the firm's equity investments as the head of CREF Investments.
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