OppFunds and Columbia Threadneedle Win Big in Chitown
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Thursday, October 26, 2017

OppFunds and Columbia Threadneedle Win Big in Chitown

Celebrations are in order for the marketing teams at Aberdeen Standard, Columbia Threadneedle, Franklin Templeton, Hennessy, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, John Hancock, Matthews Asia, OppenheimerFunds, Saturna Capital, T. Rowe Price, and 26 other firms, mostly fund firms.

Last night Kimber Lintz and the rest of the Mutual Fund Education Alliance (MFEA) team hosted their 21st annual STAR Awards ceremony, again in Chicago. 36 firms won a total of 95 awards for a variety of communications, education, and marketing materials geared toward retail investors, financial advisors, and retirement plan participants. Firms competed against fellow firms in different categories by size: small, medium, large, and large plus.

The biggest firm winners were Columbia Threadneedle and OppFunds, which landed six awards each. Aberdeen Standard, Franklin, Hennessy, J.P. Morgan, John Hancock, Matthews Asia, Saturna, and T. Rowe won five awards each. Other multi-winners included: Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Janus Henderson, MFS, U.S. Global Investors, and Vanguard, three awards each; Ariel, Hartford Funds, Invesco, Legg Mason, Lincoln, Nationwide Funds, Principal Funds, and Royce.

361 Capital, AMG, BNY Mellon, Boston Common, Charles Schwab Investment Management, Federated, Fundx, Highland Capital Management, MetLife, Osterweis, Segall Bryant and Hamill, Thornburg, and Wells Fargo Asset Management all won one award each.

Among other awards, OppFunds won the 2017 Community Investment Award for the philanthrophic efforts of both the firm and its employees.

Reining champions included: J.P. Morgan, which won a "special campaign" award in retirement communication for the third year in a row; Matthews Asia, which won a "newsletter/magazine" award in retail communication for the second year in a row; T. Rowe, which has won a "newsletter/magazine" award in retail communication for the past decade; and Vanguard, which won an "innovation" award in retirement communication for the fourth year in a row.

First time winners included: Federated, which won an "educational brochure" award in retail communication; Highland, which won an "educational communication" award in advisor communication; Segall Bryant and Hamill, which won an "ad campaign" award in advisor communication.

About 90 fundsters and their allies gathered for the awards ceremony, again sponsored by content marketing agency IMPRINT and featuring some remarks from IMPRINT managing partner Andy Seibert. Lintz and her team made a few changes to the awards show this year, including: shifting the schedule earlier and condensing it a bit, focusing on hors d'ouevres and cocktails to allow fundsters to go out afterwards for further celebration; changing to a new location, the JW Marriott in downtown Chicago; and tweaking the size and design of the awards themselves.

Lintz reminded fundsters that "everyone who participated and submitted entries will receive scorecards" in the coming weeks. Those scorecards will include category points and judges' comments on the firms' submissions. Award submissions are judged anonymously by marketing leader fundsters.

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