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Adler lands top job at PREI

Eric Adler’s meteoric rise in private equity real estate continues as he is named CEO of the $37 billion real estate investment manager a little more than three years after joining.

Eric Adler will replace Allen Smith at the helm of Prudential Real Estate Investors (PREI), the real estate investment management arm of US financial services giant Prudential Financial. 

PREI announced today that Adler would become chief executive officer of the Parsippany, New Jersey-based manager of more than $37 billion of real estate worldwide in September, following a handover period. Smith, who brings down the curtain on 26 years of service at the firm, is leaving to become president and chief executive officer at global hotelier Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts.

The ascension to PREI’s top job completes a meteoric rise for Adler. He joined the firm little more than three years ago from developer cum fund manager Tishman Speyer as its European chief executive officer. In early 2012, he was earmarked for the chief operating officer role following the retirement of Dale Taysom, but he was named chief investment officer at the start of 2013. With Allen’s departure, his time in that post was short-lived and the executive finds himself fast-tracked to the take charge of one of the world’s biggest private real estate investment platforms. PERE understands that a replacement CIO has not been identified at this stage.

Adler was identified by PERE in a special report in 2007 as one of 20 rising talents of private equity real estate. Then 38 years old, the Brussels-born Adler already had been recognized by his peers following spells as a corporate banker at Credit Lyonnais and Unibail, the French property company. One source said at the time: “He has it all. He’s multilingual, cultural and gets on with people across European markets.”

In the announcement on his appointment as CEO, David Hunt, chief executive officer of Pramerica Investment Management, said: “Eric has proven himself a terrific leader, working closely with Allen to position the firm for growth around the world. While we will miss Allen and wish him all the best in his new role, I am thrilled to have the depth of management talent that enables us to continue to build our business. Eric’s knowledge of global real estate markets brings a fresh view that will help us strengthen our current client relationships and build new ones as we seek to expand our business, particularly beyond its strong, well-known US franchise.”

Adler’s appointment marks the latest episode in a series of senior personnel changes at PREI. Last month, the firm brought aboard Jocelyn de Verdelon to lead its investing activities in France, while recent arrival Morgan Laughlin has been building out a new-look Asia team, including the hire in June of Asia chief investment officer Eryck Su. Laughlin took over as Asia Chief executive from Victoria Sharpe, another long-serving PREI executive who moved to PREI’s parent, Pramerica Investment Management, for an institutional investor-facing role.