New York Life Insurance Co. announced Friday that its insurance group and its investments group will be now run by two executive vice presidents, Chris Blunt and John Kim, respectively.

Chris BluntBlunt (left) most recently headed the company’s Retirement Income Security (RIS) business since its formation in 2008. The company claims an insurance market share of 11.7% in the United States. 

Kim (right), who is the company’s chief investment officer and head of New York Life Investments, will assume additional responsibility for RIS products and solutions, which is being combined with New York Life Investments. 

John Kim“This strategic alignment maintains our industry-leading life insurance business as our flagship core business, enhances the prospects of New York Life becoming a true leader in retirement solutions beyond income annuities, where we lead today, and keeps career agency as our defining core distribution system going forward, as it has been throughout our history,” Ted Mathas, chairman and CEO of New York Life, said in a statement. “We are confident that these moves will enable us to continue to generate strong growth across our business lines, add consumer benefits to our products and solutions, and enhance the long-term strength of our company, all to the benefit of our millions of policyholders.”

In addition to Blunt’s responsibility for life insurance, he will also be responsible for the company’s long-term care insurance business and the marketing, finance, technology, and service functions that support those product lines. The newly created Insurance Group also includes the supplemental distribution channels for the U.S. life business: the direct response business in Tampa and the Group Membership Association business, which is the largest underwriter of professional association insurance programs in the U.S. Given their closeness to the core U.S. life business, both geographically and strategically, New York Life’s operations in Mexico are being incorporated into the Insurance Group, as well.

Mathas said the alignment of former RIS businesses under Kim is designed to take further advantage of the fast-growing retirement area in which consumers first accumulate funds for retirement and later convert a portion of those funds for guaranteed lifetime income in retirement. 

Sales for the insurance group operations were approximately $3.3 billion in 2011. Sales for the investments Group were $50 billion and assets under management were approximately $300 billion in 2011.