Press release

Orion Recruits Former Ascensus Executive to Further Expansion Into the 529 Industry

Sponsored by Businesswire

Pursuing an enormous opportunity to guide investors to achieve better outcomes, Orion Advisor Solutions, an established service provider in the 529 industry, signals its redoubled expansion into this space by welcoming Rob Percival, a veteran Ascensus College Savings executive, as the firm’s new Senior Vice President of Strategic Relationships.

Percival’s hire comes at a time when more American families are taking advantage of 529 plans. According to data collected from the College Savings Plan Network, more than 14.56 million savings accounts hold a cumulative $373.5 billion in assets. At the same time, states demand innovative answers to help meet burgeoning education costs. The average account size remains steady at $25,657, and 36% of savings accounts nationwide take advantage of automatic funding.

College savings plans have become a top three core initiative for Orion’s investment management business since it began serving state plans in 2014. The firm’s expertise in building and managing portfolios has made it a natural fit for the target-date portfolios comprising 529 plans. Orion has also orchestrated the marketing and distribution of state 529 plans through a multi-channel approach of grassroots efforts, digital outreach, and traditional advertising.

“Orion brings a lot of exciting possibilities to the 529 industry,” Percival said. “In terms of tech-assisted outreach, delivery, and portfolio management, we see huge growth potential. We’re in the perfect position to help families finance their education expenses by applying the innovations Orion has developed in just the last few years.”

Continued success in the 529 space demands experience and deep relationships, and Percival brings a wealth of both to his new role. He comes to Orion from Ascensus, the largest independent retirement and college savings service provider in the U.S., where he spent more than 17 years. At Orion, Percival will work with state-level agencies and end clients, applying Orion’s technology services and deep understanding of the advisor-client journey to broaden financial access to education through savings plans.

“Today, Orion is even larger and more capable of serving education savings plans,” said Bill Wostoupal, Orion’s Chief of Strategic Relationships. “We have the tools to dramatically grow our footprint in the 529 industry, and Rob gives us the institutional connections and expertise to make it happen.”

With Percival’s guidance, Orion will deepen its existing 529 relationships with the states of Texas, Mississippi, and Vermont and plans to extend the use of its innovative technology to administer and support state 529 programs.

“At Orion, we have a unique ability to leverage our investing and portfolio management track record alongside our marketing expertise to help these states win new business and ultimately, make a positive impact on American families as they work to reach their education savings goals,” said Eric Clarke, founder and CEO of Orion.

To learn more about Orion Advisor Solutions, click here.

About Orion Advisor Solutions

Orion Advisor Solutions is the premier provider of the tech-enabled fiduciary process that transforms the advisor-client relationship by enabling financial advisors to Prospect, Plan, Invest, and Achieve within a single, connected, technology-driven experience. Combined, our brand entities, Orion Advisor Tech, Orion Portfolio Solutions, Brinker Capital Investments, and CLS Investments, create a complete yet modular offering that empowers firms to attract new clients seamlessly; connect goals more meaningfully to investment strategies and outcomes, and ultimately track progress toward each investor’s unique definition of financial success. As a result, Orion supports more than 2,100 advisory firms with $1.3 trillion in assets under administration and an additional $44 billion of combined platform assets (Orion Portfolio Solutions and Brinker Capital) on the open architecture TAMP, making Orion the platform of choice for all growth-focused advisory firms looking to strengthen their client relationships, gain a competitive edge in a crowded marketplace, and build strong, profitable businesses. Learn more at