Hartford Financial Services Group has its sights set on growing its mutual fund business. The company, primarily known for its insurance products and annuities, aims to beef up its fund complex through organic growth, although the company will likely add new funds and considers acquisitions, Reuters reports.

"Over the next several years, the vast majority [of growth] is going to come from organic growth," said John Walters, executive vice president and director of the investment products division.

Right now, at $25 billion, mutual fund assets constitute less than a tenth of the company's $291.7 billion in assets under management. However, mutual funds offer greater earnings and a higher return on equity than insurance products, Walters said.

"We think we can deliver mid-teens earnings growth [in the mutual fund business] over the next several years just with the organic things that we have on the plate today," Walters said. He explained that the company would consider a major acquisition, but that strategy is not a priority. In fact, he continued, such a move is "unlikely."

Hartford is instead planning to add to its fund offerings through partnerships where outside money managers act as sub-advisors for mutual funds. Wellington Management Co. currently manages most of the insurer's mutual fund equity assets.

The staff of Money Management Executive ("MME") has prepared these capsule summaries based on reports published by the news sources to which they are attributed. Those news sources are not associated with MME, and have not prepared, sponsored, endorsed, or approved these summaries.

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