SPRINGFIELD, Mass., March 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- After a record-breaking year in 2012, the Retirement Services Division of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company ( MassMutual) is enjoying a strong start to 2013 following the company's recent acquisition of The Hartford's retirement plans business. Through February, MassMutual's retirement plan sales results are ahead of plan by 25%. While 71% of the overall sales pipeline is with large broker-dealer firms, independent firms are gaining share quickly. "We are seeing excellent activity across the full spectrum of plan sizes, territories and markets," says Hugh O'Toole, senior vice president and head of sales and client management for MassMutual's Retirement Services Division. "It's clear that confidence in MassMutual is high, stemming from our reputation for delivering world-class service and the company's financial stability. We are committed to helping the members of our combined sales force, as well as their advisors and TPAs, to hit the ground running. The results and the feedback are extremely positive," he adds. Significantly, MassMutual's proposal activity in the emerging markets (under $5 million in assets under management) is its strongest ever, with 80% of new plans coming through third-party administrators (TPAs). Month-over-month proposal activity in February increased over January, with March off to an even better start. According to Elaine Sarsynski, executive vice president of MassMutual's Retirement Services Division and chairman, president and CEO of MassMutual International LLC, MassMutual's momentum is also reinforced by strong advisor, TPA and sponsor satisfaction levels and a desire among all constituents for a provider with a long-term commitment to the retirement plan market. "MassMutual has been around for 161 years and in the retirement plan business for more than 65 years. With all the volatility in the financial industry, we hear again and again that people trust MassMutual to be here when they need us," adds Sarsynski. "We believe our mutual structure and focus on delivering consistent value for the long term are good reasons for customers to feel confident." "In 2012, MassMutual's Retirement Services Division achieved record results on virtually every metric. I am delighted to say that 2013 is shaping up to be another great year for MassMutual and all of our new employees and customers," says Sarsynski.