O'Connor Group has proposed combining its 10-year-old, $1.1 billion Retail Property Trust closed-end fund's properties, some New England Development properties and Jacobs Group properties, along with the property management group, the WellsPark Group, a source said. If the combination goes ahead as expected, an IPO could follow.
Investors in RPT are expected to get details about the proposed merger and IPO in a couple of weeks.
No one at the O'Connor Group could be reached for immediate comment. O'Connor Group and New England Properties merged last year and formed WellsPark.
Earlier this year, staff at the California State Teachers' Retirement System gave the RPT a "needs improvement'' rating, saying it had disappointing investment returns and lacked a future strategy.
For the five years ended March, 31, 1997, the RPT has had a total compound annual gross return of 4%, the source said.
The median manager in the non-U.S. equity universe of InterSec Research underperformed the EAFE index by almost a full percentage point during the second quarter, InterSec reported. While the index rose 13%, in U.S. dollar terms, InterSec's median manager produced a 12.1% return.
According to the firm, managers' underweighting of the then-strong Japanese equity market, as well as stock selection in the United Kingdom, weighed on overall returns. However, manager performance was aided by emerging markets investments.
City of New Orleans Employees' Retirement System will conduct a search for a small-cap value equity manager to invest between $10 million and $20 million. The search will be conducted by Dean Witter Investment Consulting; a hiring is expected before the end of the year, said Jerry Davis, board chairman.
He said an asset allocation study presented to the board earlier this month did not recommend new asset classes as anticipated. Nevertheless, he said, the $309 million system may consider at its Aug. 29 meeting adding real estate and a core or midcap to large-cap equity manager.
BF Goodrich Co., Richfield, Ohio, outsourced benefit administration for its $440 million defined contribution plan to Towers Perrin, said Mike Spickard, manager of retirement benefit plans.
Fidelity handles investment management and record keeping.
Synapse L.L.C. assisted in the search.
Western Pennsylvania Hospital, Pittsburgh, hired Peachtree Asset Management as a large-cap growth stock manager for its $144 million pension plan and $47 million foundation. Peachtree replaces Columbus Circle Investors, which managed $32 million in pension assets and $8 million in foundation assets, said Mark Miller, director of internal audit and treasury services.
Evaluation Associates assisted.
James Biundo, president of U S WEST Investment Management, and John Podjasek, a retired vice president at Allstate Insurance, will be co-heads of private placements for Forstmann-Leff International. Mr. Biundo, who oversaw the U S WEST pension funds, said he will be relocating to Chicago for the job. A replacement has not been named yet, he said. A spokesman for Allstate said Mr. Podjasek retired in 1995.
Peter M. Halloran, director of equities at the Moscow office of Credit Suisse First Boston, resigned to form Pharos Capital Management, which will launch a fund for investing in Russian securities.
Pharos Russia Fund will invest in equities selected by the firm's team of investment specialists based in Moscow. Mr. Halloran said he expects to raise an initial $150 million within a month's time, principally from institutions and individuals in North America and Europe.
Graham Dickason has been named general manager-international asset management, a new position, for MPF Management Services, Johannesburg. The firm manages the 29 billion rand ($6.2 billion) Mining Industry Pension Funds. Mr. Dickason formerly was general manager with responsibilities for South African equities. Mike Cullabine, a member of MPF's finance department, succeeds Mr. Dickason in his former role.
Mr. Dickason said he will focus on growing MPF's international stock portfolio to 15% of total assets from the current 5%