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Prudential to Realign Its U.S. Businesses

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Prudential Financial Inc. plans to put its U.S. individual life, annuity and investment advisory operations in one individual solutions unit, under the leadership of Lori Fouché.

Fouché has been the chief executive officer of the Prudential Group Insurance unit. She began working for Prudential in 2013. Before that, she was president of Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company. She has a bachelor’s degree in history from Princeton and a master’s degree in business from Harvard.

(Related: 5 Ways an AXA U.S. Spinoff Could Affect You)

The creation of the individual solutions unit is part of a U.S. operations realignment Prudential announced today. Prudential will also be creating a workplace solutions unit and an investment management unit.

Prudential hopes to complete the realignment sometime between Sept. 30 and Dec. 31.

At the individual solutions unit:

  • Kent Sluyter, head of individual life, will take over from Fouché as president of annuities.

  • Caroline Feeney, the head of Prudential Advisors, will become president of individual life.

  • Salene Hitchcock-Gear, the chief operating officer at Prudential Advisors, will become the unit’s president.

Andy Sullivan, who has been the head of the group insurance unit, will lead the workplace solutions unit.

David Hunt, president of PGIM, will continue to run the investment management unit.

Stephen Pelletier, chief operating officer of Prudential’s U.S. businesses, said in a statement that the new structure is a result of Prudential’s “customer first” philosophy.

“To further improve outcomes for our customers, we have formalized an organizational structure that allows for greater agility and integration in how we engage, serve and deepen relationships with our customers throughout their lifetimes,” Pelletier said.

The new structure will also help Prudential allocate resources to capitalize on growth opportunities, and to continue to provide transparency at the business segment level, Pelletier said.

Prudential is making the announcement as some if its competitors are planning or implementing efforts to separate from individual life and annuity units, due to concerns about low interest rates, new accounting rules and new marketing rules.

A securities analyst at Wells Fargo Securities L.L.C. recently dubbed the wave of separations a “Great Restructuring of the global life insurance industry.”

MetLife Inc. is spinning off its Brighthouse Financial individual life and annuity unit.

AXA S.A. has talked about spinning off its U.S. life operations.

A team at the Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Manulife Financial Corp. executives appear to be interested in finding a way to separate from John Hancock Financial Services Inc.

A Wells Fargo analyst noted that Prudential has been benefiting from strength in variable annuity deposits as well as in strong international insurance earnings and improving group insurance results.

— Read Icahn Said to Ease Off Demand for AIG Breakup Under New CEO on ThinkAdvisor.


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