Brockelman to Lead Putnam DC Adviser Sales

Putnam Investments has made changes to senior roles on its defined contribution team, in what Edmund F. Murphy, III, Managing Director, Head of Defined Contribution, called “the next logical step in the structure of our organization.” 

Jim Brockelman has been appointed head of defined contribution adviser sales. Brockelman, most recently EVP of National Sales at John Hancock, is a 25-year industry veteran. He also spent nearly fifteen years at Putnam in the defined contribution distribution area. 

Putnam is also going from seven dedicated wholesalers to nine to better optimize its adviser distribution, Murphy told PLANADVISER.

Brockelman assumes his role from Ben Lewis. Lewis will lead a strengthened effort to build the firm’s plan business in the $150 million and larger plan market.  Lewis will bring added focus to the firm’s work with national and regional consultants in the larger plan market segments and strengthen overall distribution capabilities in this area. Murphy said Putnam currently has 10 active pursuits with plan assets of greater than $500 million. Putnam is “determined to be successful” in that plan size segment, Murphy said, adding they “needed someone to drive that focus.”

“We think we can be very disruptive in that space,” he continued.

Michael MacWade also has joined the firm from Fidelity Investments. He will assume responsibility for the relationship management function across the defined contribution business, with special emphasis on supporting mid-, large- and mega-plans.  MacWade worked at Fidelity for 23 years, most recently at National Financial working with registered investment advisers. During his 23 years at Fidelity, MacWade’s experience encompassed relationship management, client service, and operations, with extensive mega-plan experience, Murphy noted.

Another area of focus for Putnam is that of defined contribution investment only (DCIO). Putnam is making a “material investment” in this business, which is led by Peter Whitman. Previously there were only two staff members dedicated to the DCIO business, but that is growing to 10, Murphy said. Whitman will be leading that build out effort. 

Brockelman and MacWade began at Putnam October 11. Brockelman, Lewis, MacWade, and Whitman all report to Murphy.