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Prudential plans agri ramp up, hires new management

Prudential Agricultural Investments (PAI), the US-based agriculture debt and equity business of Prudential Mortgage Capital Company, has made two new hires, including to a newly-created chief investment officer position.

Prudential Agricultural Investments (PAI), the US-based agriculture debt and equity business of Prudential Mortgage Capital Company, has made two new hires, including to a newly created chief investment officer position.

The firm wants to increase its footprint in the agri investment market in the wake of growing interest.

Jess Jarratt is replacing Charles Allison as president and Matt Ciaschini is now chief investment officer, a new role at the firm. Allison has retired after 24 years at the firm.

Jarratt and Ciaschini join Ray Smith, senior vice president overseeing agricultural lending, in a leadership team that will focus on meeting the extra demand for agri-related debt and equity investment. PAI invests on behalf of Prudential’s general account and third parties.

The bulk of PAI’s business is lending to agribusinesses that want to expand but it also acts as an equity advisor to a hedge fund. This is one of PAI’s oldest divisions, a spokesperson told Agri Investor.

Jarratt joins PAI from Wells Real Asset Management Company where he was president. He also served as director of Wells Timberland Reit. Before this he worked at SunTrust Robison Humphrey where he filled various roles involving structured real estate investing, capital markets and banking.

Ciaschini joins from Harvard Management Company where he was vice president and worked on the fund’s $700 million international agri investment portfolio. Prior to that he was consulting various agribusinesses and was vice president of operations for Silverado Premium Properties, a vineyard investors and operator in California.

PAI has $3.9 billion in assets under management.