Prudential, the London-based parent company of Jackson National Life Insurance Company, has appointed Jackson vice chairman and COO Mike Wells to the position of president and CEO of Jackson and as an executive director of the Prudential Board of Directors.

Wells will succeed Clark Manning, who will step down as CEO at the end of 2010. Manning will serve as chairman of Pudential US operations until 30 April 2011, at which time he will enter into an advisory role that will continue until the end of 2011.

Wells will join the Prudential board of directors in January 2011.

Wells has served on the Boards of Directors for Brooke Holdings, Brooke Life Insurance, Jackson National Life Insurance, Curian Capital, Jackson National Life Distributors and National Planning Corporation.

Wells joined Jackson in 1995 as president of Jackson National Life Distributors, the marketing and distribution arm of Jackson.

He played an integral role in the development of Jackson’s first variable annuity and fixed index annuity products.

Prudential group CEO Tidjane Thiam said Wells has a long and proven career at Jackson across all of the company’s US operations, and was identified as the appropriate successor to Manning some time ago.