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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

New MFS Website Puts the Focus on RIAs

News summary by MFWire's editors

MFS Investment Management has launched a new Web portal to better meet the needs of RIAs. The new site will give advisors access to information including fund attribution analysis, portfolio commentaries, portfolio holdings analysis, and sector/security attribution. MFS has also rebranded and relaunched its Institutional Investor portal on MFS.com.

As part of a series of recent enhancements to its MFS.com web site, MFS Investment Management® announced today that it has launched a new Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) web portal, specifically geared toward meeting the needs of RIAs, a growing and important distribution channel for the firm.

“We are pleased to bring a richer content experience to RIAs. We know the web is a preferred channel through which RIAs gather product information and interact with asset management firms,” said Bill Finnegan, Global Retail Marketing Director. “Providing tools and access to our products in a clear and user-friendly format via the Internet is a winning proposition for both RIAs and MFS.”

The RIA portal provides advisors with a hub for the value-added marketing and research services offered by MFS. Advisors registering for the site will have access to information including fund attribution analysis, portfolio commentaries, portfolio holdings analysis, and sector/security attribution. A significant portion of the content available on the RIA portal had previously been available for research analysts conducting due diligence on MFS and its products. Management consultant firm kasina, which focuses on financial services firms operating within the intermediary space, previously recognized MFS’ content in this area as industry-leading for its product emphasis and in-depth performance reporting capabilities.1

In addition, in its annual web site rankings, kasina earlier this month recognized MFS.com as a “Top Ten Financial Intermediary Web Site for 2007,” tying for third-place overall. In its evaluation, kasina reviewed 101 advisor web sites for quality, availability and user experience. The firm reviewed hundreds of different data points; analyzed broad categories like branding, online services, and product and performance information; and created and walked through sample user scenarios representing the stages of the advisor sales cycle to determine the user experience.2

Other additions to the site revolve around key elements of the firm’s ongoing Choose What Fitssm retail brand campaign. The site’s newest features – including multimedia clips from MFS portfolio managers and industry professionals, and a “quick pick” product grid designed to help advisors easily navigate MFS offerings – are aligned with the current phase of the campaign, which emphasizes specific MFS products and value-added information available for advisors and their clients.

MFS has also re-branded and re-launched its Institutional Investor portal on MFS.com, with the result being a more informative, organized page for institutional clients and prospects.

MFS also has plans to roll out the following enhancements in 2008:

* Morningstar® Site Buildersm Integration– By integrating this popular tool directly into MFS.com, advisors will have greater flexibility and access to more comparative tools with faster results. Advisors will no longer have to leave MFS.com to use the tool.

* Site Re-design – MFS plans to freshen the overall design of the site next year to more closely align it with the MFS brand and make it easier for advisors to access the information most relevant to them, including a complete enhancement and re-organization of the Products & Performance section, which will integrate richer information with business building materials and tools.

MFS manages $204 billion in assets on behalf of more than 5 million individual and institutional investors worldwide as of September 30, 2007. The company traces its origins to 1924 and the creation of America’s first mutual fund.

1 Source: kasina, “Breaking the Bottleneck: Achieving Distribution Success by Supporting Gatekeepers,” 2006.

2 Source: kasina, “kasina Names Top 10 Financial Intermediary Web Sites For 2007,” November 14, 2007 

Edited by: Erin Kello

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