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Rating:GE Enters the Fray Not Rated 3.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Monday, January 22, 2001

GE Enters the Fray

Reported by Tamiko Toland

GE Asset Management has appointed a new senior vice president to help service registered investment advisers. GE has joined the many firms that have similarly set their sights on the fee-based advisers.

Robert Methven, previously chief financial officer, is now senior vice president of sales to the RIA community. Before working at GE four years ago, Methven had been at Arthur Andersen. He will report to Michael Cosgrove, president of GE Asset Management.

"We are pleased to have as seasoned a professional as Rob Methven take on this new and exciting role," Cosgrove said in a statement. "We believe that building a solid presence in the registered investment adviser community with our selection of high quality investment products plays a key role in furthering our organization as a world class institutional investment management firm."

How will the RIAs react as more firms, especially larger ones, swing heavily-laden marketing guns in their direction? The two make an odd couple, the entrepreneurial independents clashing culturally with mega-complexes. Furthermore, many RIAs prefer to provide their clients more value-added by working with unknown funds.

As GE digs its foxhole to wage battle in the war over RIA attention, have they considered whether this is a winnable war? Room on the front is getting crowded, and the independents don't have unlimited resources to handle all the combatants. Like the rest of the combatants, GE had better have something to distinguish itself from the other green shirts in the field.  

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