MassMutual / Hartford ‘Deal of the Year’

MassMutual’s acquisition of The Hartford’s retirement plans business recognized at 20th Annual Mutual Fund Industry awards

SPRINGFIELD, Mass., May 8, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — The 20th Annual Mutual Fund Industry Awards recently held in New York City were doubly sweet for MassMutual. The highly-coveted and long-running Mutual Fund Industry Awards are given annually by the editors of Fund Industry Intelligence and Fund Director Intelligence to the most impactful fund leaders, marketers, trustees and independent counsel to the industry.

MassMutual’s acquisition of The Hartford’s Retirement Plans Group was named Deal of the Year for 2012. According to the award sponsors, “MassMutual’s purchase of The Hartford’s retirement plans business was transformational for the firm and a huge deal for the retirement industry.” Deal of the Year is awarded to the M&A deal that has most changed the landscape of the fund or retirement industry.

MassMutual’s retirement plans business has a strong focus on the mid-size market and offers a full range of products and services for corporate, union, nonprofit and governmental employers’ defined benefit, defined contribution and nonqualified deferred compensation plans. The deal further reinforces MassMutual’s strategic commitment to grow its small- to mid-size presence and further extends the company’s position in the tax-exempt/governmental retirement plans market.

The deal was the largest in the retirement market in 2012 based on several factors including:

  • Purchase price of approximately $350 million
  • Combined recordkeeping assets of over $120 billion
  • Combined retirement plans served of more than 40,000
  • Doubled the number of plan participants to more than three million


“This deal enabled MassMutual to double its market share well ahead of plan,” said Elaine Sarsynski, executive vice president of MassMutual’s Retirement Services Division and chairman, president and CEO of MassMutual International LLC. “It also enabled us to expand our distribution and grow our presence in the emerging and government markets which are key growth areas for us,” added Sarsynski. “The collective efforts of many people contributed to the success of this transaction,” says William Silvanic, senior vice president and actuary for MassMutual’s Retirement Services Division who led MassMutual’s deal team. “Special recognition goes to Michael O’Connor, corporate vice president, Kevin Finnegan, senior vice president and deputy general counsel, and Jaime Genua, assistant vice president and counsel, as well as our extended deal team including Barclays and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. This deal represents teamwork at its finest with winning results on many fronts,” added Silvanic.

The deal further reinforces MassMutual's strategic commitment to grow its small- to mid-size presence and further extends the company's position in the tax-exempt/governmental retirement plans market

MassMutual also captured a second award for the Ad Campaign of the Year with its “Who Matters Most” campaign. The award recognizes “the most innovative and attention-grabbing advertising effort by a fund industry player.” Mullen, headquartered in Boston, is MassMutual’s agency of record and producer of the multimedia campaign which included broadcast, out-of-home, online and offline elements targeting consumer audiences as well financial professionals and retirement plan sponsors. E. Heather Smiley, chief marketing officer for the Retirement Services Division, accepted the award on behalf of MassMutual.

Smiley lauded the “tremendous collaboration and creativity of the entire advertising and branding organization,” noting the significant contributions of John Chandler, MassMutual’s chief marketing officer, Lara James, vice president, brand strategy & advertising, Life Company Marketing, Lisa Reilly, assistant vice president of advertising and public relations for MassMutual’s Retirement Services Division, and ad agency Mullen.

To learn more about MassMutual Retirement Services, please contact your retirement plan professional or call MassMutual at 1-866-444-2601,

About MassMutual
Founded in 1851, MassMutual is a leading mutual life insurance company that is run for the benefit of its members and participating policyholders. The company has a long history of financial strength and strong performance, and although dividends are not guaranteed, MassMutual has paid dividends to eligible participating policyholders consistently since the 1860s. With whole life insurance as its foundation, MassMutual provides products to help meet the financial needs of clients, such as life insurance, disability income insurance, long term care insurance, retirement/401(k) plan services, and annuities. In addition, the company’s strong and growing network of financial professionals helps clients make good financial decisions for the long term.