Retirement Industry People Moves

PNC Asset Management moves ahead on CIO transition; Morningstar acquires RightPond analytics capabilities from Rocaton Investment Advisors. 

PNC Asset Management Group Enacts CIO Transition

PNC Asset Management Group named Thomas Melcher as the company’s new chief investment officer back in January, but he is now beginning to take on full responsibility for the role with the pending retirement of James Dunigan.

The firm explains that Melcher and Dunigan have been working closely through first quarter to prepare for the full transition of responsibilities.

Orlando Esposito, head of the PNC Asset Management Group, says Melcher “will build on Jim’s legacy of outstanding service. He brings a strong appreciation of our clients’ needs, as well as 20-plus years of investments experience, to the role.”

Dunigan joined PNC predecessor Provident National Bank as a portfolio manager in the Trust & Investment Management Division in 1987. Over nearly three decades with the company, he held various management and investment leadership roles, and today chairs PNC’s Investment Policy Committee and Administrative Committee with oversight of the pension and 401(k) plans.

Melcher joined PNC in 1991 as a credit analyst, advancing through a number of roles including chief investment officer for PNC Wealth Management in Philadelphia and southern New Jersey. He was named managing executive of Hawthorn in 2004 and has since grown the practice into one of the nation’s largest ultra-high net worth wealth management firms.

The firm also announced that Nicole Perkins, market director of fiduciary services for Hawthorn’s Philadelphia and Delaware markets, is succeeding Melcher to lead Hawthorn. Prior to joining PNC in 2011, she ran her own private legal practice, where she counseled families and the owners of family-owned businesses in connection with wealth preservation, multigenerational planning, business succession planning and charitable planning. She previously practiced as a trust and estate associate at Morgan Lewis LLP and Duane Morris.

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NEXT: Morningstar Acquires RightPond 


Morningstar Acquires RightPond

Morningstar Inc. announced the acquisition of RequiSight, LLC, which does business under the RightPond brand and provides business intelligence data and analytics on defined contribution and defined benefit plans for financial services firms.

Morningstar acquired RightPond from Rocaton Investment Advisors, LLC, an institutional investment advisor in Norwalk, Connecticut.

RightPond specializes in business intelligence and analytics capabilities that “reveal gaps, trends, outliers, and risk signals regarding plan performance, fees, capital flow, gatekeeper relationships, and best practices of defined contribution (DC) and defined benefit (DB) plans.”

The company services many types of benefits plans, including corporate DC and DB retirement plans, pensions, 403(b)s; health and welfare plans; public pension funds; foundations; endowments; and other institutional investors.

Scott Burns, head of asset management solutions for Morningstar, says RightPond has a “distinct data set and powerful analytics that give institutional investors and advisers a unique way to gather data on where investors in retirement plans are investing their money. By combining RightPond’s business intelligence retirement data and analytics with Morningstar’s performance and other investment strategy attribute data, we’re creating a more complete view of the investment landscape to connect investors with advisers, consultants, and asset managers.”

Morningstar will continue to offer RightPond as a standalone capability until it is integrated into Morningstar Data and Morningstar Direct, the company’s cloud-based investment analysis platform for institutions and advisers. Eventually, the company will rebrand RightPond under the Morningstar name.

RightPond, based in Westport, Connecticut, was first developed in 2012 by Rocaton as a benchmarking tool to help its institutional investors become more efficient at setting strategy and measuring risk. The development team included two data scientists with backgrounds from IBM Research who tackled the daunting task of harnessing massive sets of structured and unstructured data. The company created a data extraction, normalization, and analytics platform and commercialized it in early 2014 as RightPond.