Corporate growth

Barb Van Zomeren Discusses OregonSaves Success

​In a recent arti​cle​​ published by BenefitsPro​​, SVP Barb Van Zomeren discusses the success of the OregonSaves program. “Participation rates have been better than expected, and the program has been received positively by employer groups,” said Van Zomeren. As of September 1, 2018, 1,160 employers have enrolled in the program, accounting for 39,284 employees, or 73 percent of workers eligible to participate. On average, monthly contributions to the IRAs is about $100, making for an average savings rate of 5.13 percent. Total assets in the program topped $6.7 million.


Ascensus Appoints New Regional Vice President

Todd Engman Joins Sales Team to Support Financial Advisors and Their Clients in the North Region

Dresher, PA—Ascensus—whose technology and expertise helps millions of people save for retirement, education, and healthcare—is pleased to announce the appointment of Todd Engman as regional vice president on the firm’s retirement plan sales team for the North region, covering Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and South Dakota.

In this role, Engman will work with financial advisors, third-party administrators, and financial institutions—including institutional partners and DCIO (defined contribution investment only) sales representatives—to build and maintain Ascensus’ retirement plan distribution networks. He will report directly to Anthony Bologna, vice president of retirement sales at Ascensus.

Engman has more than 10 years of retirement industry experience in relationship management, business development, and sales. He most recently served as 401(k) regional sales director for Lincoln Financial Distributors and has also held positions at Ameriprise Financial and Baker Tilly Investment Advisors. Engman earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was recognized on NAPA’s Top 100 DC Industry Wholesalers list in 2017.

“Our financial advisors and their clients will benefit from Todd’s deep knowledge of retirement plans along with his strong strategy and communication skills,” said Jason Crane, head of retirement sales at Ascensus. “We’re fortunate to have him as part of our sales team in the North region.”

About Ascensus

Ascensus is the largest independent recordkeeping services provider, third-party administrator, and government savings facilitator in the United States. The firm delivers technology and expertise to help millions of people save for what matters most—retirement, education, and healthcare. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com. View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com.


Ascensus Enters into Agreement to Acquire PenSys

Addition of Highly Respected TPA Increases Firm’s Scale and California Presence

Dresher, PA—Ascensus—whose technology and expertise helps millions of people save for retirement, education, and healthcare—has entered into an agreement to acquire PenSys. The third-party administration (TPA) firm will immediately become part of Ascensus’ TPA Solutions division.

Based in Roseville, California, PenSys is a nationally recognized TPA that specializes in the design, implementation, and administration of defined contribution, defined benefit, and cash balance retirement plans. The firm, which also offers 3(16) fiduciary services, has established a strong reputation for providing creative plan design and high quality service.

“PenSys is one of the most highly respected TPAs in the country due to their focus on designing plans to meet clients’ unique needs and their use of technology to enhance personal service,” says Jerry Bramlett, head of TPA Solutions. “Their addition to Ascensus TPA Solutions goes a long way toward helping us build a national TPA that offers a broad set of services and resources to financial professionals, employers, and employees.”

“Since 1995, we’ve worked hard to make PenSys a partner who understands what service really means to financial professionals, CPAs, and their current and prospective clients,” states Bryan Jacobson, PenSys’ chief executive officer. “We’ll continue to offer the best possible solutions for establishing and maintaining their retirement plans as part of Ascensus.”

“PenSys is a high integrity business with excellence in plan design, actuarial consulting, and 3(16) services complemented by their open-architecture business model,” says Raghav Nandagopal, Ascensus’ executive vice president of corporate development and M&A. “This acquisition not only expands our California footprint significantly, but also adds to our capabilities to service clients nationally. We are delighted to welcome their clients and associates to the Ascensus family.”

About Ascensus

Ascensus is the largest independent recordkeeping services provider, third-party administrator, and government savings facilitator in the United States. The firm delivers technology and expertise to help millions of people save for what matters most—retirement, education, and healthcare. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com. View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com.


CalSavers Board Selects Ascensus to Administer New Retirement Program

New program to serve 7.5 million California employees who lack a workplace retirement plan

Dresher, PA—Ascensus—whose expertise and technology helps more than eight million people save for retirement, education, and healthcare—has been selected by the California Secure Choice Retirement Savings Investment Board to administer the CalSavers Retirement Savings Program. In a competitive bidding process that included several leading financial services firms, Ascensus was identified as the strongest program administrator.

Ascensus was selected for its unparalleled knowledge of retirement plan administration, deep experience in plan design for other state-run investment programs, state-of-the-art technology, IRA and compliance expertise, and successful administration of the first two state-sponsored retirement programs, OregonSaves and Illinois Secure Choice.

“We’re honored to partner with California on this program in support of the retirement goals and dreams of its residents,” said Kevin Cox, head of government savings at Ascensus. “Our society is facing a savings dilemma that is leaving millions of Americans unprepared for some of life’s biggest milestones, especially retirement. We share in California’s mission to close this savings gap, and CalSavers constitutes a major step on that journey.”

Roughly 57 percent of private-sector employees in California do not have access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan—yet people are 15 times more likely to save if they have the tools to do so through their employer. By providing a low-cost, automatic savings vehicle to employers, CalSavers will help expand plan access to more than 7.5 million Californians, helping to rectify this disparity.

Set to launch statewide in 2019, CalSavers will be run by a board of directors chaired by California State Treasurer John Chiang. For more information about CalSavers, visit: https://www.treasurer.ca.gov/scib/.

About Ascensus

Ascensus is the largest independent recordkeeping services provider, third-party administrator, and government savings facilitator in the United States. The firm delivers technology and expertise to help millions of people save for what matters most—retirement, education, and healthcare. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com. View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com.


Ascensus Announces Agreement to Acquire 401k Plus

Firm’s TPA Solutions Division Expands Physical Presence in Texas Along with Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution Expertise

Dresher, PA—Ascensus, a technology-enabled solutions provider that helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future, has entered into an agreement to acquire 401k Plus. The third-party administration (TPA) firm will immediately become part of Ascensus’ TPA Solutions division. Retirement Asset Advisory, Inc., a registered investment advisor co-owned by 401k Plus’ owners, is not a part of the transaction and will continue to be managed separately.

Based in Arlington, Texas401k Plus provides employers with comprehensive benefit and benefit plan administrative and consulting services. The firm specializes in developing and administering participant-directed 401(k) plans, but also offers cash balance plans, traditional defined benefit plans, profit sharing plans, and money purchase pension plans.

“As an organization, 401k Plus does a phenomenal job of getting to know their clients so that they can understand their businesses and employees,” says Jerry Bramlett, head of TPA Solutions. “This high-touch approach to service aligns nicely with the way that TPA Solutions engages with clients—we’re looking forward to strengthening our team through the addition of 401k Plus’ associates.”

“At 401k Plus, we’re proud of our reputation for providing efficient, accurate, and affordable services to our clients,” states John Cole401k Plus’s owner and vice president. “We’ll continue to build on this reputation as part of Ascensus as we work to develop retirement plan solutions that are tailored to the needs of companies and their employees.”

401k Plus is a highly respected qualified plan administrator in Texas,” says Raghav Nandagopal, Ascensus’ executive vice president of corporate development and M&A. “In addition to establishing our TPA Solutions market presence in this important geographic region and continuing to expand our national footprint, this acquisition supports our growth strategy by increasing our defined contribution and defined benefit expertise to support current and prospective client needs.”

About Ascensus

Ascensus helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future—retirement, education, and healthcare—through technology-enabled solutions. With more than 35 years of experience, the firm offers tailored solutions that meet the needs of asset managers, banks, credit unions, state governments, financial professionals, employers, and individuals. Ascensus supports over 60,000 retirement plans, more than 4 million 529 education savings accounts, and a growing number of ABLE savings accounts. It also administers more than 1.6 million IRAs and health savings accounts. As of March 31, 2018, Ascensus had over $187 billion in total assets under administration. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com.

View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com/page/show/tpa and careers.ascensus.com or on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ascensus. For the latest company news, follow @AscensusInc on Twitter.


Ascensus Adds to Retirement Expertise with Agreement to Acquire Continental Benefits Group, Inc.

TPA Solutions’ Client Base to Benefit from Influx of Experience

Dresher, PA—Ascensus, a technology-enabled solutions provider that helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future, has entered into an agreement to acquire Continental Benefits Group, Inc. (Continental Benefits). The third-party administration (TPA) firm will immediately become part of Ascensus’ TPA Solutions division.

Based in Burlington, New Jersey, Continental Benefits specializes in tax-qualified retirement plans—like 401(k), profit sharing, cash balance, and pension plans—along with non-qualified deferred compensation plans. The firm’s plan administrators are experienced in tackling the day-to-day complexities of retirement plans from compliance testing to distribution processing, while its consultants possess intricate knowledge about sophisticated plan designs than can help employers maximize plan benefits.

“TPA Solutions is looking forward to welcoming Continental Benefits’ associates and incorporating their skill sets into our business,” says Jerry Bramlett, head of TPA Solutions. “Members of Continental Benefits’ actuarial & plan consulting and administration teams average nearly 20 years of experience; we’ll put the expertise they’ve acquired over that time to good use in helping individuals prepare for retirement.”

“At Continental Benefits, we understand the challenges that business owners face, including rising taxes and business expenses, retaining talented employees, and others,” states David Hanisco, Continental Benefits’ vice president. “Joining Ascensus will make us even better equipped to design retirement programs that meet plan participants’ needs while helping employers work toward accomplishing their own retirement goals.”

“Continental Benefits is an ideal addition to our company from business, geographic, and cultural standpoints,” says Raghav Nandagopal, Ascensus’ executive vice president of corporate development and M&A. “We are delighted to welcome their clients and associates to Ascensus.”

About Ascensus

Ascensus helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future—retirement, education, and healthcare—through technology-enabled solutions. With more than 35 years of experience, the firm offers tailored solutions that meet the needs of asset managers, banks, credit unions, state governments, financial professionals, employers, and individuals. Ascensus supports over 60,000 retirement plans, more than 4 million 529 education savings accounts, and a growing number of ABLE savings accounts. It also administers more than 1.6 million IRAs and health savings accounts. As of March 31, 2018, Ascensus had over $187 billion in total assets under administration. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com.

View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com/page/show/tpa and careers.ascensus.com or on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ascensus. For the latest company news, follow @AscensusInc on Twitter.


Ascensus Acquires INTAC Actuarial Services, Inc.

Leading Service Provider Expands Its TPA Presence While Strengthening Defined Contribution and Defined Benefit Expertise

Dresher, PA— Ascensus, a technology-enabled solutions provider that helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future, has entered into an agreement to acquire INTAC Actuarial Services, Inc. (INTAC). The third-party administration (TPA) firm will immediately become part of Ascensus’ TPA Solutions division.

Based in Ridgewood, New Jersey, INTAC provides complete administration of employer-sponsored retirement plans for about 3,000 small to mid-sized companies, their owners, key executives and employees. The firm understands what employers want and need in a retirement plan and delivers solutions through high quality client service—each retirement plan is designed, created, and proactively refined to meet each client’s goals while maximizing retirement benefits. INTAC also provides ongoing education to their clients and the professionals in the communities they service to ensure that they remain abreast of industry changes and issues.

“Like Ascensus, INTAC is committed to excellence in everything that they do—especially when it comes to making retirement plans work for their clients,” states David Musto, Ascensus’ president. “INTAC has one of the lowest employee turnover rates in the industry and has been ranked as one of the best places to work in New Jersey; we’re pleased to have their associates join us to help Americans save for retirement.”

“As a family-run business, we pride ourselves on creating meaningful client relationships and on creating a culture in which employees feel like they’re part of the family,” says Charles Rosenberg, INTAC’s vice president. “As part of Ascensus, we’ll be able to combine our expertise with their resources to continue to provide a proactive, personalized client experience at every interaction with our firm while also offering exciting growth opportunities to our employees.”

“Geographically speaking, the tri-state and greater Delaware areas are important market expansion opportunities for our TPA Solutions division,” says Raghav Nandagopal, Ascensus’ executive vice president of corporate development and M&A. “With its strong historical growth, successful long-term track record, and associate-focused culture, INTAC is an ideal business to help Ascensus achieve its immediate and long-term growth plans.”

About Ascensus

Ascensus helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future—retirement, education, and healthcare—through technology-enabled solutions. With more than 35 years of experience, the firm offers tailored solutions that meet the needs of asset managers, banks, credit unions, state governments, financial professionals, employers, and individuals. Ascensus supports over 60,000 retirement plans, more than 4 million 529 education savings accounts, and a growing number of ABLE savings accounts. It also administers more than 1.6 million IRAs and health savings accounts. As of March 31, 2018, Ascensus had over $187 billion in total assets under administration. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com.

View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com/page/show/tpa and careers.ascensus.com or on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ascensus. For the latest company news, follow @AscensusInc on Twitter.


Ascensus Expands California Presence with Agreement to Acquire QBI, LLC

Defined Contribution and Defined Benefit TPA Brings Product Expertise and Sales Leadership to Ascensus

Dresher, PAAscensus, a technology-enabled solutions provider that helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future, has entered into an agreement to acquire QBI, LLC (QBI). The third-party administration (TPA) firm will immediately become part of Ascensus’ TPA Solutions division.

Based in Woodland Hills, California, QBI is one of the largest administrators of defined contribution and defined benefit plans in the country. The firm, which boasts a 40-year track record of successfully serving retirement industry needs, works with more than 3,500 plans and employs over 80 employees—most of whom are long-tenured due to the company’s high employee retention rate.

“QBI is a fast-growing company whose expertise in defined contribution and defined benefit plans is matched by their passion for building solid, long-lasting relationships with clients,” states David Musto, Ascensus’ president. “These traits—along with the culture of corporate and associate responsibility that they’ve created—will make QBI a meaningful contributor to Ascensus’ mission to help Americans prepare for the future.”

“QBI has always believed that the best administered retirement plans are supported by a well-established and efficient service model and infrastructure,” says Greg Taylor, QBI’s founder. “I’m looking forward to making QBI even more effective at helping businesses achieve their retirement plan goals as part of Ascensus, as our team will have access to additional resources that will allow us to anticipate and respond to client needs, large and small.”

“We see great potential for QBI due to the tremendous amount of brand equity they possess along with their leadership position in the TPA market,” says Raghav Nandagopal, Ascensus’ executive vice president of corporate development and M&A. “In addition, their strong presence in California allows us to increase our footprint in a region that is geographically attractive to us. We will continue to pursue opportunities that can help us grow in this area.”

About Ascensus
Ascensus helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future—retirement, education, and healthcare—through technology-enabled solutions. With more than 35 years of experience, the firm offers tailored solutions that meet the needs of asset managers, banks, credit unions, state governments, financial professionals, employers, and individuals. Ascensus supports over 60,000 retirement plans, more than 4 million 529 education savings accounts, and a growing number of ABLE savings accounts. It also administers more than 1.6 million IRAs and health savings accounts. As of March 31, 2018, Ascensus had over $187 billion in total assets under administration. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com.

View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com/page/show/tpa and careers.ascensus.com or on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ascensus. For the latest company news, follow @AscensusInc on Twitter.


Ascensus Announces Acquisitions of Swerdlin & Company and SES Advisors

Deals Enhance Firm’s Diversified Retirement Offerings and Boost Its ESOP Capabilities

Dresher, PA—Ascensus, a technology-enabled solutions provider that helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future, is pleased to announce the acquisition of Swerdlin & Company and SES Advisors. Both firms will become part of Ascensus’ TPA Solutions division, bringing considerable employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) capabilities. Swerdlin & Company will also add significant defined contribution and defined benefit expertise.

Swerdlin & Company provides actuarial, consulting, administrative, and recordkeeping services for all types of retirement, health, and cafeteria plans to clients nationwide. Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, the firm services benefit plans—including 401(k), cash balance, ESOP and health reimbursement accounts—from all industries for clients in 50 states. Swerdlin & Company works with plans of any size, from sole proprietorships to companies with thousands of employees.

“For almost 40 years, we at Swerdlin & Company have held ourselves accountable for the services we provide and the work we produce,” says Lee Swerdlin, president and chief operating officer for Swerdlin & Company. “We’ll continue this tradition as part of Ascensus, continuously improving client experiences and building long-lasting relationships based on honesty, trust, and mutual respect.”

SES Advisors specializes in employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) administration, consulting, and recordkeeping services. The firm, which is based Valparaiso, Indiana, helps companies administer ESOP plans by balancing the needs of owners and employees to create successful, sustainable employee ownership outcomes. SES Advisors takes a uniquely strategic and responsible approach that maximizes value for owners, their companies, and their employees. SES Advisors’ ESOP transaction and financial advisory practice was not part of the transaction; that business will continue under its current ownership and will be rebranded as SES ESOP Strategies, Inc.

“The team at SES Advisors has worked hard to make our company a leading provider of services throughout the ESOP life cycle,” says Doug Cannon, SES Advisor’s president. “We’re looking forward to continuing to grow our expertise as part of Ascensus so that we can guide clients through the intricacies of running an ESOP.”

“The ESOP capabilities and expertise of Swerdlin & Company and SES Advisors helps Ascensus deliver an even broader set of product solutions to its new and existing clients,” says David Musto, Ascensus’ president. “In addition, the business, personal, and ethical standards to which these companies adhere when working with their clients align perfectly with our own Core Values—we couldn’t be happier to welcome Swerdlin & Company and SES Advisors to the Ascensus family.”

“Both Swerdlin & Company and SES Advisors offered an exciting opportunity to advance our immediate and long-term growth plans via product and geographic expansion,” says Raghav Nandagopal, Ascensus’ executive vice president of corporate development and M&A. “Swerdlin & Company is a strong, market-leading TPA in the Atlanta region that offers diversified retirement services, while SES Advisors is an ESOP specialist that will immediately make TPA Solutions a leader in this area of the market.”

“We look forward to helping both of these companies continue to grow as part of Ascensus TPA Solutions,” concludes Nandagopal.

About Ascensus

Ascensus helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future—retirement, education, and healthcare—through technology-enabled solutions. With more than 35 years of experience, the firm offers tailored solutions that meet the needs of asset managers, banks, credit unions, state governments, financial professionals, employers, and individuals. Ascensus supports over 60,000 retirement plans, more than 4 million 529 education savings accounts, and a growing number of ABLE savings accounts. It also administers more than 1.6 million IRAs and health savings accounts. As of March 31, 2018, Ascensus had over $187 billion in total assets under administration. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com.

View career opportunities at http://careers.ascensus.com/page/show/tpa and careers.ascensus.com or on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ascensus. For the latest company news, follow @AscensusInc on Twitter.


Ascensus Appoints Robert Kaplan as Chief Compliance Officer

Well-Established Compliance Expert Will Act as CCO at the Corporate Level and Across Multiple Business Lines

Dresher, PA—Ascensus, a technology-enabled solutions provider that helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future, announces the appointment of Robert Kaplan as chief compliance officer (CCO).

In this role, Kaplan will act as CCO at the corporate level and across multiple lines of business, including 529 college savings plans and other government-sponsored savings plans. He will also be responsible for the firm’s broker-dealers, investment advisor, transfer agent, and trust companies, developing and instituting organizational programs while leading the compliance team.

Kaplan brings more than 30 years of broker-dealer and investment advisor compliance experience to Ascensus. He previously held the position of vice president and district director for the FINRA district office located in Philadelphia. Kaplan joined FINRA in 2000, serving as deputy director and acting director of the New York district office. Prior to his association with FINRA, he served as senior vice president, secretary, counsel, and chief compliance officer for Fiserv Securities, Inc.

Kaplan holds a B.A. in History from Temple University and a Juris Doctor from Villanova University School of Law. He also attended the FINRA Institute at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was designated a Certified Regulatory and Compliance Professional.

“Bob’s in-depth legal and regulatory expertise—along with his proven leadership skills—will help to ensure that Ascensus continues to have a best-in-class compliance function,” said Joe Dansky, Ascensus’ head of legal, risk management, and compliance. “On behalf of everyone at Ascensus, I’m pleased to welcome Bob to our organization.”

“Bob’s extensive experience in leading compliance departments at FINRA and in the financial services industry makes him an outstanding choice to oversee compliance at Ascensus,” states David Musto, president of Ascensus. “Adding a seasoned veteran like Bob is yet another example of Ascensus’ ability to attract high-end talent who can contribute to our company’s growth.”

About Ascensus

Ascensus helps more than 8 million Americans save for the future—retirement, education, and healthcare—through technology-enabled solutions. With more than 35 years of experience, the firm offers tailored solutions that meet the needs of asset managers, banks, credit unions, state governments, financial professionals, employers, and individuals. Ascensus supports over 60,000 retirement plans, more than 4 million 529 education savings accounts, and a growing number of ABLE savings accounts. It also administers more than 1.6 million IRAs and health savings accounts. As of March 31, 2018, Ascensus had over $187 billion in total assets under administration. For more information about Ascensus, visit ascensus.com.

View career opportunities at careers.ascensus.com or on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/ascensus. For the latest company news, follow @AscensusInc on Twitter.