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Tasplan hires Robeco to manage A$245 million in low-volatility equity

Tasplan, a member-owned superannuation fund, hired Robeco Australia to manage A$245 million ($184 million) in a global low-volatility equity strategy, a spokeswoman for the A$7.6 billion Hobart, Tasmania, fund confirmed.

Mark Williams, Tasplan's head of listed equities, said in a Robeco news release Tuesday that the allocation was part of the disposition of roughly A$4 billion in defined contribution retirement savings transferred to Tasplan on April 1 as a result of a reorganization of the local government's RBF Tasmanian Accumulation Scheme.

Stephen Dennis, head of Robeco Australia, said in the release that the firm's low-volatility global conservative equities strategy takes into account momentum and valuation to guard against piling into “expensive generic low-vol stocks” at a time when growing investor interest in the low-volatility factor is raising the risks of crowded trades.

A Sydney-based spokeswoman for Robeco said the firm's conservative strategy “will allocate 80% to low-risk variables and 10% each to momentum and value variables,” in contrast to a multifactor strategy approach that would look to make equal allocations to the three factors.