6 U.K. pension funds commit to social impact funds

A group of six U.K. local authority pension funds committed a total of £152 million ($258 million) across three money managers running social impact funds, said a spokesman for PIRC, the consultant for the investment initiative.

The pension funds are the £10.5 billion Greater Manchester Pension Fund, Manchester; £10 billion West Yorkshire Pension Fund, Bradford; £10 billion West Midlands Pension Fund, Wolverhampton; £5.6 billion South Yorkshire Pension Fund, South Yorkshire; £5.8 billion Merseyside Pension Fund, Liverpool; and £3.4 billion East Riding of Yorkshire Council Pension Fund, East Yorkshire.

The pension funds have committed assets in principle across three money managers and a total of five investment funds. The managers are Bridges Ventures, an impact-driven investment specialist manager; BOOST&Co., which provides debt solutions to small and medium businesses in Europe; and Midven, a venture capital firm. Bridges Ventures was allocated £112 million; BOOST&Co., £ 25 million; and Midven, £15 million. According to a news release by Investing4Growth, Greater Manchester committed 50 million; West Yorkshire, 20 million; West Midlands, 30 million; South Yorkshire 15 million; Merseyside 17 million; and East Riding 20 million. Spokesmen for Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire and West Midlands could not be reached for comment by press time. Spokesmen for South Yorkshire, Merseyside and East Riding confirmed the committed investments.

The commitments are part of the Investing4Growth initiative, launched by five of the pension funds last year. The group seeks investments that have an economic impact as well as positive social and environmental outcomes in the U.K.