NU Online News Service, Sept. 24, 1:28 p.m. – ING Americas, Atlanta, is combining its U.S. retail and worksite marketing businesses and putting one of the executives who came from Aetna Inc., Hartford, on top.

Thomas McInerney, who was once president of Aetna Financial Services and has been running the worksite marketing arm, will now be chief executive officer of the combined operations.

Robert Salipante, former president of ReliaStar Financial Corp., Minneapolis, has been running the retail financial services unit. He will now serve as president of the combined unit and report to McInerney, ING says.

Glenn Hilliard will continue to serve as chairman.

ING Americas is a subsidiary of the ING Groep N.V., Amsterdam. ING has had major operations in the United States for years, but greatly expanded its presence in late 2000. It started by acquiring ReliaStar, then acquired the Aetna Financial Services and Aetna International units from Aetna.

At ING Americas, a new operating structure “calls for eliminating business unit boundaries across all operations and forming one integrated U.S. business,” ING Americas says.

The unit will focus more on consumer marketing, and it will make distribution channels and product manufacturing operations independent entities, the company says.

Separating distribution from product manufacturing means the company will be better at building programs to serve specific customer segments, such as maturing families, or families already in retirement, the company says.