Fidelity and SunGuard announced Tuesday a multi-year partnership that gives the two companies wide access to the growing network of intermediaries, especially in the retirement market.

Through the deal, Fidelity's Registered Investment Advisor Group will manage the clearing, custody and brokerage services of its 600 clients using SunGuard's systems to process transactions.

That group represents $100 billion in assets, according to Kevin Rafferty, president of SunGuard Transaction Network, also known as STN.

"We believe that the enhanced set of services offered by this single platform sets a new standard in the bank trust and retirement plan recordkeeping industry," said William Carey, president of Fidelity's Registered Investment Advisor Group.

The partnership calls for joint marketing, and while it offers Fidelity immediate access to SunGuard clients, for SunGard, the deal gives the company the ability to bundle new brokerage services with its software systems to serve a quickly growing marketplace.

Carey called the deal his group's largest since its founding in 1991. The partnership will help both companies streamline their operations. "It allows each of us to do what we do best," Carey said.

Besides its own 3,100 registered advisors, Fidelity serves bank trust departments, and third-party administrators.

The bank and trust market is expected to swell, according to Carey, as 76 million Baby Boomers reach retirement and begin to distribute their savings into trusts.  In fact, by 2010, the trust market could grow to $7 trillion, compared to $3 trillion today, said Carey.

Neither company would disclose the terms of the deal, although both said they will make "significant" investments to its development and growth.

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