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Rating:Alliance Moves Further into 401k Land Not Rated 3.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Wednesday, January 16, 2002

Alliance Moves Further into 401k Land

Reported by Tony Pennino

Alliance Capital is jumping further into the 401(k) business now that it has signed an agreement with Emplanet to forge an e401(k) product, Gary Gould, senior vice president of business development at Emplanet, told the MutualFundWire.com. The new agreement creates an alliance between the two firms wherein Emplanet will provide the backend recordkeeping support for the 401(k) offering and Alliance will leverage its distribution muscle to sell the service.

The new offering will be available to 401(k) plans of any size. Emplanet will customize a website for Alliance Capital. It will be branded for Alliance Capital.

Emplanet is an e401(k) vendor. It began by providing services in the small 401(k) plan niche and began moving up-market from there. It offers recordkeeping services under its own banner and through alliances such as this one.

"There certainly is a demand for this," Jake Rie, vice president of Alliance Fund Distributors, told the 401kWire.com. "We've been working with Emplanet on this for the past two months, and we really have not done any marketing at all. So far, we have had 250 bids and have closed a handful of those bids."

Rie noted that the e-product will be offered strictly through the broker/dealer channel. "Our new offering reduces the work of the financial advisor while giving them greater value for their dollar," Rie contended. "We will be coming up with a brochure shortly describing the Emplanet product and getting it out to the financial advisor community."

For Rie, the next steps will be getting the word out about the new platform and helping broker/dealers become comfortable with an e-solution. Alliance Capital will also be investigating whether this or a similar tool can be developed for the 529 plan space.

"We aren't simply throwing the logo onto the website," added Gould. "We are making a complete customized change for Alliance's needs. We are keeping this new website consistent with the look and feel of other Alliance online pages. We have made adjustments to the tabs and navigation features. This is an alliance product, not simply a rebranding of Emplanet's 401(k) offering." 

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