Ascensus Restructures Retirement Business and Its Leadership Team

The recordkeeper with a large presence in small businesses and PEPs moves into four business segments.

Recordkeeper and retirement services firm Ascensus LLC announced Monday it has restructured its retirement business into four business segments to focus on the goals and needs of its clients, partner firms and advisers.

The four units will report to President Nick Good, who joined the firm in September 2023 and reports to David Musto, the CEO and chair of the Dresher, Pennsylvania-based firm. The new structure is designed to help the firm manage a near doubling of the “partners, plans, and savers it serves in recent years,” according to the announcement, citing 154,000 retirement plans under administration.

Nick Good

Ascensus, acquired by private equity firm Stone Point Capital in 2021, offers tax-advantaged retirement plans, including pooled employer plans, 529 education savings accounts, health savings accounts and state-facilitated retirement plan accounts. The firm has more than $723 billion in assets under administration and is the 10th-largest recordkeeper by assets in the U.S., according to PLANSPONSOR’s 2023 Recordkeeping Survey.

The prior structure was a single retirement unit overseen by one person, first Musto and more recently Good. Now the business will be split into four areas, with three named leaders and a search for the fourth:

  • Core Retirement, focused on Ascensus-branded defined contribution activity, will be led by Jason Crane, who also will continue to lead distribution for all of retirement;
  • Partner Solutions, serving the firm’s private-label partnerships with financial institutions, will be led by Jay Candelmo;
  • Small Business, including the firm’s small business retirement offerings CoPilot, Individual(K), SEP and SIMPLE plans and solutions. The company is currently searching for a business unit leader to be named “in the very near future,” according to the announcement; and
  • Retirement Products and Solutions, offering options to banks, credit unions and other entities, will continue to be led by Steve Christenson.

“Creating defined segments allows us to tailor our business even more effectively to the specific needs of those we serve, and enhances our ability to deliver even more to them,” Good said in a statement. “It also strengthens our dedicated focus on our valued partners—and recognizes the almost doubling of our depth and breadth in retirement over the last several years.”

Crane has led distribution for Ascensus’ retirement business since joining in 2018. Candelmo, who joined in 2017, was most recently head of relationship management for retirement. Christenson has served as head of retirement products and solutions since 2000.

Ascensus also works with nonqualified retirement plans, and its FuturePlan by Ascensus is the country’s largest independent retirement third-party administrator.

The firm reported in September 2023 that its pooled employer plans hit $1 billion in assets.