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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

GEAM Adds Two VA Wholesalers

by: Erin Kello

GE Asset Management has hired two more wholesalers as part of its new sales initiative. Angela Wright and Michael D. Cobianchi joined GEAM as regional vice presidents responsible for insurance/variable annuity channel sales. They report to Joe Connors, senior vice president of VA and sub-advisory distribution.

Wright was previously assistant vice president of product marketing at Allianz Life. Cobianchi was previously vice president, institutional wholesaler with XTF.

Company Press Release Stamford, CT – May 21, 2008 – GE Asset Management Incorporated (GEAM) today announced that Angela Wright and Michael D. Cobianchi have joined GEAM as Regional Vice Presidents with responsibility for sales to the insurance/variable annuity market. Wright and Cobianchi will be responsible for the Central and Western U.S., respectively, joining Barry Solon, who leads efforts in this market for the eastern region. All three positions report to Joe Connors, Senior Vice President – VA and Sub-Advisory Distribution.

“Our national presence in this channel is an important part of our intermediary distribution strategy, and complements our efforts in other areas,” said Connors. “The expanded team allows us to bring GEAM’s investment expertise to a wider universe of insurance companies, while also serving as a support network for other key relationships, such as those in our growing sub-advisory business.” “We’ve recently expanded our team across all areas of our intermediary distribution division, and we intend to grow our relationships in the insurance market as aggressively as we are in other areas,” added Mike Cosgrove, President and CEO – Mutual Funds. “By adding two individuals from outside GEAM to our VA sales team, each of whom brings extensive experience and an existing network of relationships, we believe we can make significant strides in this channel.”

Wright comes to GEAM with 15 years of industry experience.

Prior to GEAM she worked at Allianz Life, first as Assistant Vice President of product marketing and most recently as a Regional Vice President covering financial institutions in the Midwestern U.S. Earlier in her career she held positions as a marketing director at Fortis Financial and American Express Financial Services. She holds a BS in Business Administration and Marketing from Winona State University.

Cobianchi joins GEAM with over 18 years of experience and has held a variety of positions in the industry, most recently as Vice President, Institutional Wholesaler with XTF, Jennison and Invesco where he focused on sub-advisory and DCIO relationships. He also has experience wholesaling fixed and variable annuities across all channels for Allstate and Ohio National, and served as Senior Investment Marketing Manager for Pacific Life. He holds an MBA from the University of San Diego and received his BSE in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Princeton University. Barry Solon is the Eastern U.S. Regional Vice President for the annuity channel. He joined GEAM in 2004 as a Senior Relationship Development Associate. Prior to joining GEAM, he was with Salomon Brothers Asset Management (a division of Citigroup) for five years serving as a Wholesaler and National Accounts Relationship Manager. He has over 15 years of industry experience, including roles as a municipal bond trader, financial advisor and commodities broker. He holds a BA in Economics from New York University.

GEAM is a global asset manager wholly owned by General Electric Company, a diversified technology, media and financial services company. Built on an 80-year heritage of investment experience, GEAM today manages approximately $182 billion (as of March 31, 2008) in total assets. Portfolios managed by GEAM and its subsidiaries include $85 billion in GE Asset Management client assets for leading institutions and individual investors around the world, and the $57 billion GE U.S. Pension Trust, an overfunded plan to which the company has not made a contribution since 1987. Investment strategies are offered across all major asset classes, including U.S. and international equities, fixed income, and alternative assets. GE Investment Distributors, Inc., Member FINRA & SIPC, is a wholly owned subsidiary of GEAM.  

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