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Empower Retirement to Buy MassMutual’s Retirement Plan Business

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Empower Retirement is buying the retirement plan business of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co., which has some $167 billion in assets, 2.5 million participants and 2,000 employees.

The news, announced early Tuesday, comes three weeks after Empower wrapped up its purchase of RIA and robo-advisor Personal Capital, which works with $13 billion in client assets, for roughly $1 billion. 

Its latest deal is structured as “a reinsurance transaction for a ceding commission of $2.35 billion,” according to a statement, and is expected to close in the fourth quarter. Plus, Empower has pledged to support the MassMutual business with $1 billion of required capital after combining it with its own retirement plan operations.

The two entities say they plan to work together to sell digital insurance products from Haven Life Insurance Agency. Also, Empower and Personal Capital clients will be able to buy MassMutual’s voluntary insurance and annuities.

“With today’s announcement, Empower is taking the next step toward addressing the complex and evolving needs of millions of workers and retirees through the combination of expertise, talent and business scale being created,” said President & CEO Edmund F. Murphy III, in a statement. 

The transaction should bring Empower’s total number of plan participants to about 12.2 million and the level of assets it services to roughly $834 billion for 67,000 workplace savings plans — up from about $667 billion in assets owned by 9.7 million American workers and retirees in 41,000 plans.

“In Empower, we are pleased to have found a strong, long-term home for MassMutual’s retirement plan business, and believe this transaction will greatly benefit our policyowners and customers as we invest in our future growth and accelerate progress on our strategy,” MassMutual Chairman, President & CEO Roger Crandall said in a statement.

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