New York-based Goldman Sachs Asset Management introduced a new "R6" retirement share class across 54 of its mutual funds this week, marking the company’s first foray into retirement-specific shares.

The company touts the new shares, which can only be purchased as part of a retirement plan, as a cost-effective investment option for retirement clients, with lower expense ratios than the current "Institutional" share class.

Greg Wilson, Goldman Sachs' head of defined contribution, investment-only sales for third-party contribution, says the R6 shares give advisors another tool to work with for clients’ retirement plans.

“We believe cost and transparency are at the forefront of plan sponsor considerations for plan design and investment decisions,” Wilson says. “Advisors today, working with plan fiduciaries regardless of plan size, consider a number of factors when selecting the right share class for both the individual plan and its participants.”

Wilson says that with the offering, Goldman Sachs is trying to expand its position in the defined-contribution, investment-only market.

“Recently, sponsors have been rethinking the way plan participants pay fees, and the launch of the R6 share class allows sponsors to offer participants a fee-neutral fund lineup while minimizing their administrative burden,” Wilson says. “The R6 share class is one example of Goldman Sachs Asset Management’s continued investment in the DC business and our dedication to offering tailored investment solutions to meet retirement goals.”

The R6 shares will not pay any form of intermediary compensation and will not be sold directly to the public.

The initial launch includes 49 funds, with the remaining funds slated for launch later this year.