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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Kim Rises: New York Life Investments Has a New Chief

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

John Kim is on the rise again, and a familiar face is taking the day-to-day reins over New York Life Investments, which includes New York Life Investment Management and its retail MainStay Funds [profile] brand.

John Kim
New York Life Insurance Company
Vice Chairman, President, Chief Investment Officer
Today New York Life Insurance Company chairman and CEO Ted Mathas, 48, handed his third hat, president, over to Kim, 54. Mathas also anointed Chris Blunt, 53, as president of the investments group.

Blunt first joined New York Life in 2004, leading the retail investments strategy within the investments group. Later Blunt and Mark Pfaff served as co-presidents of New York Life's insurance and agency group. Pfaff remains in that role, now reporting to Kim, and will retire at the end of 2015.

Chris Blunt
New York Life Investments
Prior to New York Life, Blunt was chief marketing officer in the Americas for Merrill Lynch Investment Management (now part of BlackRock), president of Mercury Funds Distributors, and national sales manager for Goldman Sachs Funds. He also led GivingCapital. He's an alumnus of the University of Michigan and of Wharton.

As for Kim, he joined New York Life in 2008 as head of the investments group after leading Prudential Retirement (and leading the Cigna Retirement and Investment Services before Pru purchased it). He's an alumnus of the University of Michigan and of UConn.

Mathas notes that New York Life's assets under management have doubled to $540 billion since Kim took over seven years ago. Since then, Kim rose to chief investment officer of all New York Life (overseeing the mutual insurer's general account) and vice chairman of the whole company, as well as head of the investments group.

Both of New York's major operating groups, investments on the one hand and insurance and agency on the other, will now report to Kim.

New York Life's investments group includes NYLIM, led by CEO Drew Lawton (another veteran 401(k) executive, like Kim). NYLIM previously included New York Life Retirement Plan Services, which John Hancock bought in a deal that closed earlier this spring. (That deal also saw New York Life take over 60 percent of Hancock's life insurance policies on a reinsurance basis.) 

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