City of Burbank (Calif.) hired ICMA-RC as sole bundled provider for its 457 plan, consolidating the nearly $100 million in assets that had been managed by three entities, said Gregory Dyson, senior vice president and chief operations and marketing officer for ICMA-RC.
The previous providers were ICMA-RC, Great-West Life and the $204 billion California Public Employees' Retirement System, Sacramento.
The city consolidated the plans to cut costs for plan participants and to enhance investor education and plan administration, according to a joint news release.
Carrie Matson, the city's deputy financial services director, could not be reached for further details by press time.
Chicago Teachers give passing marks to 2 commitments
Chicago Public School Teachers' Pension and Retirement Fund committed $25 million each to Fortress Japan Opportunity Domestic fund, which invests in loans in Asia, and Hudson Realty Capital, a U.S. middle-market real estate debt fund, according to Kevin Huber, executive director.
Townsend Group, the $9.2 billion Chicago fund's real estate consultant, assisted.
Kansas City schools plan chooses lone provider
Kansas City (Kan.) Public Schools hired VALIC as sole bundled provider for the schools' 403(b) and 457(b) plans, with a combined $15 million in assets, confirmed Connie Brand, director of finance for the school district.
The school district had used 15 providers, including VALIC. “We wanted to simplify things for our employees,” Ms. Brand said in an interview. “Some employees couldn't figure out which one to go with. Now, we give them one-stop shopping.”
The school district had issued an RFP in November inviting the previous providers as well as others to make bids.
The 403(b) plan had $14 million in assets and the 457(b) plan had $1 million in assets as of Jan. 1, the most recent data available, said Caroline Grossman, a spokeswoman for VALIC, in an e-mail response to questions. Each plan has the same 26 investment options, she said.
LACERS keeps TT International on short leash
Los Angeles City Employees Retirement System rehired TT International, which manages $123 million in active international equities, but is keeping the firm on watch for performance, Linda Aparicio, public information officer for the $9.9 billion system, wrote in an e-mail response to inquiries.
TT International's contract was set to expire May 31, according to an attachment to the agenda for the May 25 board meeting.
TT was renewed on three-year contract. However, the board has the right to terminate the agreement with or without cause at any time upon 30 days' prior written notice, according to a memo by the system's general consultant, Pension Consulting Alliance,PCA also noted that Mark Williams, a TT International portfolio manager, plans to reduce his workload, becoming a limited partner in 2012; the firm plans to hire a replacement before then.
2 get LACERA nod for corporate credit
Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association, Pasadena, Calif., hired Harch Capital Management and Brigade Capital Management to run $100 million each in opportunistic corporate credit fixed income, said Lisa Mazzocco, chief investment officer of the $35 billion association.
The funding source has not been determined, she said.
MassPRIM debuts in emerging markets private equity
Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board, Boston, approved its first emerging markets-focused private equity commitments.
The $44.2 billion system committed up to $40 million to Ethos Fund IV, a $750 million buyout fund focused on South Africa; and up to $25 million to SAIF Partners IV, a $1.2 billion late-stage/expansion capital fund focused on China, India, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
The board also committed e30 million ($37 million) to Gilde Buy-Out Partners IV, a midmarket buyout fund focused on Germany, France and the Benelux countries.
MassMutual to care for McLaren Health DC plans
McLaren Health Care Corp., Flint, Mich., hired MassMutual Retirement Services as bundled provider of its 403(b), 401(k), 457(b) and 457(f) plans, with a combined $212 million in assets.
“MassMutual's total retirement services capabilities and innovative employee education tools were key factors in their selection as our new retirement plan provider,” Susan Joiner, corporate manager, retirement services, at McLaren, said in news release from MassMutual. “We needed a provider that understands the unique needs of a large health-care organization — one that could help streamline and consolidate multiple plans and deliver an exceptional employee education experience.”
Neither a McLaren spokesman nor MassMutual spokeswoman Lisa Reilly could be reached for further details by press time.
Minnesota commits $400 million
Minnesota State Board of Investment, St. Paul, committed $400 million to three resource-oriented private equity funds and a credit opportunities fund at its June 2 meeting, said Howard J. Bicker Jr., executive director.
The board committed $100 million each to CarVal Investors' CVI Credit Value Fund, EnCap Energy Capital Fund VIII and Sheridan Production Partners Fund II. The three managers already run assets in other funds for the board.
Mr. Bicker said trustees also approved a $100 million commitment to a new manager, Energy Capital Partners, for investment in its Energy Capital Partners II fund.
SBI managed $54.5 billion as of March 31, including $48 billion for the state's retirement plans.
New Mexico taps J.P. Morgan as global custodian
New Mexico State Board of Finance hired J.P. Morgan Worldwide Securities Services as global custodian for almost $40 billion in assets from the New Mexico State Investment Council, New Mexico Public Employees Retirement Association, the New Mexico Educational Retirement Board and the state treasury, confirmed Charles Wollmann, spokesman for the $14.1 billion council, Santa Fe.
The incumbent was Northern Trust, Mr. Wollmann said.
J.P. Morgan will provide global custody, fund accounting, asset and alternative investment servicing, among other services. Officials at the board could not be reached by deadline for further details.
The New Mexico funds are all based in Santa Fe. The public employees plan has $10.9 billion in assets, while the education plan has $8.6 billion.
PennSERS commits to 3rd Artiman fund
Pennsylvania State Employees' Retirement System, Harrisburg, committed $20 million to Artiman Ventures III, confirmed spokesman Robert Gentzel.
The $24.7 billion system committed $25 million to Artiman Ventures II in 2006.
San Diego City ERS hires Hastings, Janofsky & Walker
San Diego City Employees' Retirement System hired the law firm of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker to represent it in a lawsuit brought by the city seeking to have system participants share investment risk, according to a notice on the $3.7 billion system's website.
The city government currently takes responsibility for the system's investment risk under the city charter.
The city filed a petition May 3 in San Diego Superior Court asking that investment losses be included in its calculation of city employee contributions. The city wants a court order forcing the pension system to split investment losses between the participants and the city, thereby cutting the city's contribution. A hearing is scheduled for Sept. 24 before San Diego Superior Court Judge Joan M. Lewis.
Investec gets nod for Tower Hamlets bond portfolio
London Borough of Tower Hamlets Pension Fund hired Investec Asset Management to manage about £98 million ($142 million) in active bonds, mostly U.K. government issues, according to Oladapo Shonola, chief financial strategist of the £750 million fund.
Funding will come from an active bond strategy previously managed by Aberdeen Asset Management. Fund officials had decided last year to increase the weighting of government bonds at the expense of corporate bonds within the predominantly U.K. portfolio.
An RFP was issued last year; Aberdeen was invited to rebid.
Hymans Robertson advised.
Wellington to subadvise Vanguard International Explorer
Vanguard Group hired Wellington Management as a subadviser to the $2 billion Vanguard International Explorer fund, which is adopting a multimanager structure, confirmed Vanguard spokeswoman Linda Wolohan.
Wellington joins Schroder Investment Management North America, which has advised the international small-cap growth mutual fund since its inception in 1996.
Simon H. Thomas, who has worked on Wellington's international small-cap equity team since 2002, will oversee Wellington's portion of the fund and will manage a four-person investment team.
“The team's philosophy is based on the belief that global equity markets are inefficient, and it aims to exploit these inefficiencies through active stock selection,” according to a news release.