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View More Press Releases by Principal Financial Group

Press release:

Principal Announces New Retirement and Income Solutions Leaders

Issued by: Principal Financial Group

Date: June 17, 2019

Appointments mark progress in the integration of the Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement & Trust business

DES MOINES, Iowa, June 17, 2019 -- Today, Principal announced additions to its Retirement & Income Solutions leadership teams - bringing on-board top talent from Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement & Trust (Wells Fargo IRT) and establishing a unified team to lead the integrated organization in the future.

"We are excited about the progress we are making toward closing this acquisition and thoughtfully integrating two very successful businesses and talented teams," said Renee Schaaf, president of Retirement & Income Solutions. "The Wells Fargo IRT leaders who will join Principal have deep expertise, industry knowledge and proven experience that will support our ability to bring more solutions, choice and service to clients - no matter their size or complexity of needs."

Principal and Wells Fargo IRT are well-positioned to close the acquisition in early third quarter, pending regulatory approval. Aligning the right leadership teams now, before close, will help ensure minimal client disruption, retain key institutional knowledge and experience, and leverage the experiences of leaders who have managed integration and client and employee transitions in the past. The acquisition agreement allows a long transition period. During this time, product offerings and service teams will remain consistent for clients while Principal and Wells Fargo IRT bring together capabilities from both organizations to create new value in the marketplace.

"Our focus remains on bringing the best-of-the-best from both businesses together as we build out a leading retirement organization committed to helping people to live their best lives," said Schaaf. "Combined we will have unmatched capabilities to meet the needs of all customer segments with comprehensive retirement, trust & custody, executive benefits and discretionary asset management offerings."

The incoming Wells Fargo IRT leaders announced today will become part of established leader teams with the Principal Retirement & Income Solutions business headed by Schaaf as president of Retirement & Income Solutions, Jerry Patterson, SVP of Workplace Savings & Retirement Solutions, and Sri Reddy, SVP of Income Solutions. Additional leadership appointments will be made post-closing and throughout the transition process. Further details regarding the leadership structure and integration of the Wells Fargo deferred executive compensation and discretionary asset advisory businesses will be shared in the weeks to come as the two businesses continue to work toward integration.

The following Wells Fargo IRT leaders will assume roles within Principal at appropriate points throughout the integration process, following close:

  • Jon Graff, current director of participant services, will be responsible for administration and operations across Workplace Savings & Retirement Solutions.
  • Angie McDaniel, current lead for Business Solutions, will lead a new team at Principal, Business Planning and Solutions, for Workplace Savings & Retirement Solutions.
  • Brian Jirak, current director of Trust & Custody, will join the Income Solutions leader team and will have responsibility for trust, custody and pension services.
The following individuals will join the Customer Care group in Principal's Workplace Savings and Retirement Solutions:
  • Mary Hollingsworth, current director of product strategy and positioning, will transition to the Customer Care leadership team.
  • Marcia Wepfer, current director of relationship management, will transition to the Field Service leadership team.
  • Bob Millikin, current head of institutional services for investment contact centers, will join the contact center leadership team.
The following individuals will join the Employer Services and Operations group in Principal's Workplace Savings and Retirement Solutions:
  • Sheila Cox will be responsible for larger plan administration efforts.
  • James Rossini will lead operations across Workplace Savings & Retirement Solutions.
Joe Ready, current head of Wells Fargo IRT, is taking a new role as Head of Trust and Chief Fiduciary Officer for Wells Fargo Wealth & Investment Management. Ready will remain connected to the integration of Principal and Wells Fargo IRT, supporting client and employee transitions.

"I am enthusiastic about the combination of Principal and Wells Fargo IRT and remain committed to supporting a successful acquisition and transition for our clients and employees," said Ready. "While it was hard for me to accept a new opportunity while still in the midst of the integration, I am able to do so because I am confident in the work already underway and the combined value we will be able to deliver at completion."

Principal announced its intention to purchase the Wells Fargo IRT business in early April. Integration planning has been underway since then to allow for a 12 to 18-month transition period to commence following closing of the acquisition.

About Principal®
Principal helps people and companies around the world build, protect and advance their financial well-being through retirement, insurance and asset management solutions that fit their lives. Our employees are passionate about helping clients of all income and portfolio sizes achieve their goals - offering innovative ideas, investment expertise and real-life solutions to make financial progress possible. To find out more, visit us at

Insurance products and plan administrative services provided through Principal Life Insurance Co., a member of the Principal Financial Group®, Des Moines, IA 50392.

Principal, Principal and symbol design and Principal Financial Group are trademarks and service marks of Principal Financial Services, Inc., a member of the Principal Financial Group.


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