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Rating:MassMutual Merges its Fund Boards Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Friday, January 13, 2012

MassMutual Merges its Fund Boards

Reported by Armie Margaret Lee

MassMutual [profile] now has a single fund board overseeing its four proprietary mutual fund families. The Springfield, Massachusetts-based firm combined its two fund boards effective January 1.

Richard Ayers, chairman of the combined board, explained in a press release that the move yields benefits such as "operating efficiencies and lower costs, enhanced governance and oversight through the additional experiences, abilities, and perspectives of the combined Boards and broader insight into all issues affecting the MassMutual Funds."

The press release did not state how many directors are on the combined board.

The four fund trusts are MassMutual Premier Funds, MassMutual Select Funds, MML Series Investment Fund, and MML Series Investment Fund II.

Eric Wietsma, president of the MassMutual Premier Funds and MassMutual Select Funds, said the streamlined structure gives fund directors more flexibility in hiring and replacing sub-advisors.
Company Press Release

MassMutual Streamlines Structure of Proprietary Mutual Fund Trustee Boards

SPRINGFIELD, Mass., Jan. 13, 2012 -- MassMutual has announced it has combined the two Boards of Trustees that formerly oversaw the company's four proprietary mutual fund families into one Board of Trustees that now oversees all four trusts, the MassMutual Premier Funds, MassMutual Select Funds, MML Series Investment Fund, and MML Series Investment Fund II.

MassMutual enacted the plan following approval by the Funds' shareholders, which was obtained through shareholder solicitations that took place during 2011. Both Boards of Trustees had recommended the action, which became effective January 1, 2012.

"We see a number of benefits from combining the Boards, particularly improved operating efficiencies and lower costs, enhanced governance and oversight through the additional experiences, abilities, and perspectives of the combined Boards, and broader insight into all issues affecting the MassMutual Funds," said Richard Ayers, Chairman of the combined Board. "All of the Trustees worked together to structure the new Board and outline Committee tasks and Trustee assignments."

"Combining the two Boards into one makes financial sense for our Funds' shareholders," agreed Nabil El-Hage, former Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the MassMutual Premier Funds and MML Series Investment Fund II and a current Trustee on the new combined Board. "And in terms of the human element, the two Boards have worked together on a number of matters in the past, so we expect the integration will be seamless."

MassMutual believes the new Board structure will eliminate the need to replace any independent Trustees for the foreseeable future, and thereby eliminate the time and cost that would be required.

Eric Wietsma, president of the MassMutual Premier Funds and MassMutual Select Funds, also concurs. "The combined Board will benefit all of the Funds and shareholders by reducing duplication of certain expenses, management responsibilities, and duties related to having multiple Boards, and by providing the Trustees with more flexibility in hiring and replacing the subadvisers who handle the day-to-day portfolio management of the Funds," said Wietsma.
 

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