The first sign of significant changes at Fidelity since Rodger Lawson came on as president came this week, as he announced in an internal member on Wednesday that the individual investment and workplace savings divisions would be merged under the new moniker Personal and Workplace Investing, and the human resources services unit will be standalone.
“We can, and will, take better advantage of our brand’s great power to drive Fidelity fund sales, brokerage and every other business we are in,” Lawson said in the memo.
The reorg gives Abigail Johnson, the daughter of Fidelity CEO and Chairman Edward “Ned” Johnson, expanded responsibilities.
“I think what [Lawson] has done is streamline the organization to react quicker and operate more efficiently,” Eric Kobren, executive editor of Fidelity Insight, told the Associated Press. “I think Rodger is driving these changes certainly with Ned’s blessing and approval. Ned knew something had to be done, but in terms of the nitty-gritty and design, I think this is part of Rodger’s job as president.”
Anne Crowley, Fidelity spokeswoman, said she believes the Personal and Workplace Investing unit, which Abbey Johnson will oversee, will become increasingly important at Fidelity.
“For that reason, and because the model in this business is very different from our financial services activities, we believe HR Services will benefit from being run as a separate business,” she said.