NU Online News Service, May 10, 11:34 a.m. – Nationwide Financial Services, Inc., Columbus, Ohio, is targeting certified public accountants as a new distribution channel with an unusual agreement with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, New York.
The arrangement will give Nationwide access to clients of 18 of the top 100 certified public accounting firms, says Bob Rolland, Nationwide’s vice president of strategic partnerships.
Under the agreement, CPA2Biz Inc. a for-profit company established by the AICPA, will sell Nationwide’s retirement and other financial services through its subsidiary, Capital Professional Advisors Inc. In addition to 18 of the nation’s biggest CPA firms, other interested CPA firms affiliated with Capital will also have access to Nationwide’s 401k plans and other retirement and life insurance products, Rolland says.
“Each [of Capital's] CPA firms has licensed insurance professionals, and through this relationship, we gain access to probably close to 100 licensed reps,” Rolland says.
Rolland contends that working with accountants represents a tremendous opportunity to reach small-business owners and wealthy clients with insurance-related products.
“They have a trusted relationship with clients and are looked to by many of those clients as the advisors most qualified to offer them financial planning,” Rolland says. “We see CPAs as a significant distribution channel.”