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BNY Mellon hires national sales manager for Dreyfus

| Tuesday, April 22, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

Bank of New York Mellon Corp. has hired another executive to help lead its push to attract more retail investors to its Dreyfus mutual funds.

BNY Mellon Investment Management said on Monday that Ryland Pruett was named national sales manager for the Dreyfus Corp. mutual fund group, with responsibility for sales through broker dealers. Dreyfus funds are sold through investment advisers and private banks.

In June, BNY Mellon hired Andrew Provencher to head retail sales for Dreyfus. Pruett will report to Provencher. And last week, the bank hired Kimberly Mustin will to oversee distribution and consultant relations across Dreyfus, retirement and institutional markets.

“We announced previously an effort to increase individual investors,” said BNY Mellon spokesman Mike Dunn in New York. “Dreyfus has been in expansion mode since Provencher came on board in June.”

BNY Mellon is scheduled to report first-quarter financial results on Tuesday.

Reuters recently reported that BNY Mellon's investment management chief Curtis Arledge is on the hot seat because of weakness in the retail segment of its asset management business, which includes Dreyfus. Arledge said BNY Mellon is in the early stages of a strategy to attract retail investors and expects tangible progress by this summer.

Dreyfus ranks 37th by assets in the United States among mutual fund families, with $290 billion, down from 25th in 2005 and 34th in 2010, according to Morningstar.

BNY Mellon, the world's eighth-largest asset manager, handles about $1.6 trillion in investments for institutions and wealthy individuals. It also provides bookkeeping and other administrative services for $27.6 trillion worth of investments, making it the world's largest custody bank.

At BNY Mellon's annual meeting on April 9, CEO Gerald Hassell was criticized by shareholders over how the company has managed expenses and growth. Some shareholders and analysts want the company to sell its asset management business and do more to reduce expenses.

BNY Mellon embarked on a plan in 2011 to cut $700 million in expenses over three years by closing some wealth-management offices, operating improvements such as consolidating computer applications, centralizing purchasing and bringing software development in-house, but without significant job cuts. In November, it said achieved its goal a year ahead of schedule.

Pruett has 22 years of sales experience and is charged with building out Dreyfus sales force, BNY Mellon said. He previously worked at Neuberger Berman and INVESCO. Mustin worked at OppenheimerFunds and Legg Mason.

John D. Oravecz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7882 or joravecz@tribweb.com.

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