Eastspring Investments expands institutional business with US office opening

Hong Kong - 11 June 2012

Eastspring Investments, the asset management arm of Prudential Corporation Asia, part of Prudential plc of the UK, and the region’s largest multinational onshore mutual fund manager, today announced the opening of its US office. The move aims to capture the increasing interest among global investors in the Asia growth story.

The Americas business is the first for Eastspring Investments to be established outside Asia where it was founded and is based. This initiative has been made possible by the rebranding earlier this year to Eastspring Investments, a name which captures the asset manager’s Asia investment expertise and eliminates a trademark impediment created by the previous name.

Prudential Corporation Asia Chief Executive Barry Stowe said the opening of the US office marked a major milestone in the expansion of Prudential Corporation Asia's asset management business.

"This allows Eastspring Investments to take its sought after Asia investment expertise closer to the world's largest institutional market, and brings with it significant growth opportunities," Mr Stowe said.

It is the second new office for the asset manager in as many months, following the opening of the Indonesia business in May.

Eastspring Investments' Americas business will be headquartered in Chicago and will focus on building business with pension funds, investment consultants and large family offices. It will also have an office in Denver to facilitate business with Jackson National, also a member of the Prudential plc group of companies, and an existing client.

"Our Americas business will seek to tap into the growing interest in the long-term Asia growth story," said Eastspring Investments Chief Executive Graham Mason.

Speaking from Hong Kong, Mr Mason said this was never more apparent than now with uncertainty in Europe. "Large institutions with long-term mandates are now looking to diversify portions of their global asset allocations into markets in Asia which offer significant growth potential."

Mr Mason announced the appointment of Jeffrey Smith to lead Eastspring Investments' efforts in the Americas and he will report to Dean Winterton, who joined Eastspring Investments last year to grow the institutional business.

Jeff joins Eastspring Investments as Head of the Americas, based in Chicago. He will focus on building the institutional business in the US and developing the firm's expansion beyond the US into the Americas.

Jeff has more than 30 years of financial services experience and was previously head of distribution at Performance Trust Investment Advisors, a specialty investment manager in distressed markets based in Chicago. He was previously head of US distribution at Pyramis Global Advisors (a unit of Fidelity Investments) and led a team establishing and managing relationships with major US institutional investors. Prior to that, Jeff had a leadership role in the Americas business of UBS Global Asset Management as co-head of institutional, based in Chicago.

As part of the Americas sales effort, Mr. Mason also announced the appointment of Pamela Aurbach. Pam is Senior Vice President Institutional sales based in Denver and joins from Prudential plc sister company Jackson National Life Distributors where she was responsible for assessing the viability of new product offerings, geographies and distribution channels. During her career with Jackson National, Pam was seconded to Prudential UK where she was head of business development services in the intermediary sales division. Before joining Jackson National, Pam worked at GE Life and Annuity and then Transamerica, where she was responsible for annuity product development and distribution. She brings 20 years of experience in financial services to the role.

"The appointment of people of the calibre of Jeff and Pam underpin our conviction in the significant potential of the US, and indeed the Americas," said Mr Winterton.

"They will be establishing relationships on our behalf with institutional clients, pension funds and consultants who are seeking to increase their exposure to Asia," he said.

"In particular, Pam will be working closely with our partners at Jackson National for whom we already manage a sizeable pool of assets, to focus on maximising the opportunity to tap the large variable annuity product base which is meeting the needs of the US’s ageing population."

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