Conning hires portfolio manager to oversee new LDI strategies

Erin Spalsbury was named head of liability-driven investment portfolio management at Conning.

The position is new. The hiring of Ms. Spalsbury is concurrent with Conning launching a new pooled fund suite focused solely on LDI strategies for U.S. corporate pension funds.

“The pension market is very challenged now,” said Woody E. Bradford, chairman and CEO of Conning, in a phone interview. “Clients are looking for innovative ways to help address their pension challenges. So we decided to enter the pension market with a very specific LDI strategy.”

Ms. Spalsbury will oversee all LDI mandates managed by the firm, including separately managed accounts and the new pooled fund offering. She will report to Rich Sega, chief investment officer.

The new LDI suite, structured as collective investment trust vehicles, offers pension plans various investment options. The investment funds range from standard long duration to maturity-specific credit sleeves that can be used on their own or blended to develop a customized LDI strategy.

“This pooled fund suite offers clients the ability to efficiently mix and match their asset allocation such that those assets are getting better aligned and matched to their liabilities,” said Owais Rana, managing director, head of pensions and LDI solutions, in the same phone interview.

Ms. Spalsbury was managing director, fixed-income portfolio management at J.P. Morgan Asset Management (JPM). Her responsibilities have been handed off to a team that includes portfolio managers Justin Rucker and Don Clark, said JPMAM spokeswoman Kristen Chambers.

Conning had about $109 billion in assets under management as of Dec. 31.