The parent company of First American Funds has entered a retirement share class into its mutual fund family, in a move to populate smaller companies’ retirement plans.

Through its fund subsidiary, U.S. Bancorp Asset Management, First American is reaching out to companies with assets ranging from $1 million to $10 million by offering R shares to third-party retirement plan providers and broker/dealers. Index, large-cap, mid-cap, small-cap and many other types of funds will be made available for the employer-sponsored plans. While the R shares will not have front-end or contingent deferred sales loads or other back-end surrender charges, they will charge 12b-1 fees to compensate financial advisers.

"This new share class serves the needs of the rapidly growing small- to mid-sized plan marketplace, and we look forward to expanding relationships with our distribution partners in the months ahead," said Wendy Schoppert, who heads up U.S. Bancorp Asset Management’s product marketing and corporate development divisions.

Christopher Guarino, president of Bisys, a firm that will use First American’s new fund offerings in its plan, called First American a "first-rate fund family that encompasses a wide range of mutual funds that span the asset classes."

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