Nationwide Financial is getting into the retirement market.

The firm today unveiled a new defined contribution investment only (DCIO) team to help drive sales of Nationwide Funds by retirement plan advisors.

The new members of Nationwide’s DCIO sales team include:

Jeff Gardner, who will serve as the divisional vice president for the DCIO team, and will be responsible for leading the team. Gardner previously led Nationwide Financial’s fee-based sales team;

Eleana McLane, who will serve as the regional vice president for the Northeast territory. McLane joined Nationwide Financial in 2009 and was a regional wholesaler for the fee-based team;

Mark McGowan, who will serve as the regional vice president for the Central region. McGowan previously worked for Nationwide Financial’s private-sector retirement plans business as a regional wholesaler in St. Louis;

Bruce Guarino, who will serve as the regional vice president for the West Coast. His previous position with Nationwide Financial was as a regional wholesaler for the fee-based team;

Chad Metzger, who will serve as the regional vice president for the Midwest and Southeast territories. Metzger joined Nationwide Financial in 2009 and worked to increase sales to fee-based advisors.

The firm formed a DCIO because of strong growth in its mutual fund business, according to David Giertz, president of distribution and sales for Nationwide Financial. “Last year, Nationwide Funds experienced tremendous year-over-year growth of 33%, and this team will help support that level of continued growth in 2013,” stated Giertz.

In addition to a dedicated DCIO team, the firm said it has added five new wholesalers, a divisional vice president for the West Coast and a national account team devoted to mutual funds.

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