Fidelity Investments remains the biggest player in the mutual-fund business. But the goliath with $995 billion in assets has been unable to break away from the pack in the fast-growing online brokerage field. Look for that to change.
On Jan. 25, the Boston-based firm announced a major reshuffling of the top execs overseeing its push online. Gail McGovern, the former AT&T marketing exec who became Fidelity's senior operating officer for retail brokerage in late 1998, was named president of Personal Investments, which oversees Fidelity's brokerage and fund-marketing lines.
McGovern takes over just as Fidelity is picking up speed online. Last year, Fidelity put on a marketing blitz, funded in part by a $1 billion bond offering, and rose from an also-ran in online brokerage to No. 4 in market share. Now McGovern, 47, will have Fidelity's hottest job, outside of running a mutual fund, and become the company's top employee behind Chairman Ned Johnson and President James Curvey. "My job is to keep the momentum going," she says.