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July 16 (Bloomberg) -- Prudential Financial Inc., the second-largest U.S. life insurer, hired Michael Schlachter from Wilshire Associates to lead the newly created Multi-Asset Class Solutions group.

The team will help institutional investors deploy funds to public and private bonds and equities, real estate and alternative assets and to hedge their wagers, according to a statement today from the Newark, New Jersey-based company. Schlachter, 42, will hire a small number of people and connect clients with Prudential money managers, said Theresa Miller, a spokeswoman for the insurer’s investment management arm.

“As institutional investors look to consolidate their relationships, they need strategic partnerships with firms who share their global perspective and offer more than just single asset-class investment management,” Schlachter said in the statement.

Prudential, Ameriprise Financial Inc. and Principal Financial Group Inc. are among money managers seeking to diversify offerings for clients and boost fee income. Ameriprise in June hired William Landes from Gottex Fund Management Holdings Ltd. to expand strategies in which the insurer manages more than $150 billion.

Schlachter reports to Taimur Hyat, chief strategy officer for Prudential Investment Management, Miller said. The operation’s eight businesses managed $891 billion as of the end of the first quarter.

BlackRock, Goldman

David Hunt, chief executive officer of Prudential Investment Management, said last month that he prefers to expand by recruiting talent from other firms, rather than through acquisitions. The insurer has hired from rivals including BlackRock Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Legg Mason Inc.’s Western Asset Management in the past year.

Schlachter was a managing director at Wilshire, where he was a pension consultant and advised multinational corporations, state governments and federal agencies, Prudential said. He joined Wilshire in 1999 and previously worked as a financial analyst for Goldman Sachs. He has a bachelor’s degree in politics and economics from Princeton University and an MBA from the University of Chicago.

Wilshire said that Andrew Junkin, a managing director who worked with Schlachter as co-leader of major client relationships, will continue to handle accounts that the pair shared.

“Wilshire has broad and deep resources and continues to provide clients with the excellent investment advice for which the firm is known,” Julia Bonafede, president of Wilshire Consulting, said in an e-mailed statement. “Michael was a dedicated member of the Wilshire Consulting team and his commitment to our clients and the firm was greatly appreciated.”

To contact the reporters on this story: Zachary Tracer in New York at; Kelly Gilblom in New York at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Dan Kraut at Steve Dickson

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