Experts across the retirement income industry will meet at the second Vision IRI conference starting Monday in Williamsburg, Virginia. Executives of insurance companies, asset managers, broker-dealers, banks and distributors, as well as some of the industry’s top financial advisors, will be in attendance.
The agenda for this year includes speakers from across the industry, including Dennis Glass, CEO of Lincoln Financial, Mark King, CEO of adidas Group North America, political analysts Stuart Rothenberg and Charlie Cook, and many others.
Andrew Simonelli, director of communications and marketing for the Insured Retirement Institute, expects more than 300 attendees. He tells ThinkAdvisor that IRI members seem excited and positive.
“After solid second-quarter sales results, and based on the feedback I’m hearing from our members, there is a tremendous amount of energy…I fully expect the conference to reflect this spirit,” Simonelli said.
The conference comes at a time when second-quarter fixed and variable annuity sales are at a three-year high. Citing data reported by Beacon Research and Morningstar Inc., IRI reported that sales rose to $59.9 billion, a 6.8% increase from the previous quarter‘s $56.1 billion in sales – and a 9.9% increase from the second quarter in 2013, when sales were $54.5 billion.
“We are enjoying a prolonged resurgence of fixed annuity sales of all types, with sales up $7.1 billion – or 42% – since the second quarter of 2013,” Beacon Research President Jeremy Alexander said in a statement when second-quarter sales results were reported.
Simonelli says the IRI annual meeting will emphasize the future of retirement income products, how technology will change the way members communicate with their clients, and how shifting demographics will shape the future marketplace.
Other topics on the agenda include best practices for partnering with insurers, leveraging social media to grow and maintain businesses and the current political and legislative environment – specifically forecasting outcomes of midterm elections and the 2016 presidential campaign.
In keeping with the Vision moniker, Simonelli says the goal of the gathering is to “give a 360-degree view of the industry.”