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Tuesday, March 05, 2019

A 68-Year-Old Fund Lion Partially Fades

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

This spring, the team at a publicly traded, multinational bank will drop a 68-year-old mutual fund brand from part of their business while keeping it the brand in another part of their business. Stay tuned for a marketing campaign!

Mitchell E. Harris
BNY Mellon Investment Management
CEO
Yesterday Mitchell Harris, CEO of BNY Mellon Investment Management, confirmed that the bank will rebrand the long-only side of its Dreyfus [profile] mutual fund business. Around June 3, 94 Dreyfus funds (with about $63 billion in AUM combined as of January 31) will switch away from the Dreyfus brand (and the Dreyfus lion logo) to the BNY Mellon brand. (BNY Mellon also already has a BNY Mellon Funds trust with $16.6 billion across 25 mutual funds, whose branding will not change.)

Meanwhile, the Dreyfus brand will survive via its 27 money market mutual funds (with about $162 billion in combined AUM as of January 31). BNY Mellon will even rebrand its BNY Mellon Cash Investment Strategies division as Dreyfus Cash Investment Strategies, and the Dreyfus money funds will keep Dreyfus' lion logo. And MBSC Securities Corporation, Dreyfus' distributor, will be renamed as BNY Mellon Securities Corporation.

"This is another step in our strategy to illustrate how we offer investors the best of both worlds: providing clients with access to the investment capabilities and creative solutions from our world-class investment managers, combined with global scale and financial stewardship of BNY Mellon," Harris states. "In the retail space, having a strong and recognizable brand is increasingly important to investors. The rebranding of Dreyfus is a significant milestone in supporting the growth of our U.S. retail business."

Matt Oomen, head of global distribution for BNY Mellon Investment Management, puts the rebranding in the context of FAs and retail clients "looking for investment partners with a breadth of capabilities and strong brands," a contrast with the institutional space.

"Leading with BNY Mellon Investment Management as our U.S. retail brand will make it easier for them to identify and access our full suite of investment solutions," Oomen states. "In the institutional space, our clients value direct access to our investment managers and their strategies. As a result, our investment managers' brands lead in this space."

A BNY Mellon spokesman confirms that, when the rebranding takes effect, the team will do a retail ad campaign in online and trade press, in addition to updating education and marketing materials, websites, and more.

"Our brand review work was supported by our agency marketing partners," the spokesman states, adding that it's against company policy to reveal those marketing partners.

Jack Dreyfus launched the Dreyfus mutual fund brand back in 1951. Mellon Financial bought the Dreyfus funds in 1994, and then Mellon merged with BNY in 2007.

The Dreyfus rebranding comes after Harris merged BNY Mellon Investment Management's three biggest boutiques into a single unit, branded as Mellon.

As of December 31, BNY Mellon Investment Management had $1.7 trillion in AUM. 

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