Smart Pension, London, made a roughly £100 million ($139 million) seed investment in a new credit strategy it developed alongside Natixis Investment Managers.
The retirement plan provider, which runs the multiemployer defined contribution plan of the same name — known as a master trust — made the investment from its default fund into the MV Dual Credit Fund. The strategy brings together European leveraged loans, run by Natixis affiliate MV Credit, with a global multiasset credit strategy from affiliate Loomis Sayles & Co., said a news release from Smart Pension.
Smart Pension chose to develop the fund with Natixis because of its affiliate manager setup, which enables it to “create and blend solutions,” a spokeswoman for Smart Pension said in an email.
The strategy gives Smart Pension enough liquidity to meet its needs while giving the pension fund access to private market credit. The partnership and investment is part of a longer-term strategy by Smart Pension to develop and diversify its default fund. The £100 million investment represents 10% of the default fund, the spokeswoman said. The master trust has a total £1.5 billion in assets.
"We are excited to be working with Natixis to incorporate the MV Dual Credit Fund into the Smart Pension default and open up illiquids to mass-market DC, in an accessible and affordable way," Paul Bucksey, managing director, said in the news release. "We believe this should improve returns and reduce volatility for members of the master trust, and is part of our overall plan to ensure that our default investment strategy delivers really great outcomes for our members."
The strategy is also open to other U.K. plans.
Provider Smart Pension was founded in 2014. Natixis, Legal & General Investment Management, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Link Group and Barclays are all strategic investors in the firm.
A spokeswoman was not immediately available to provide further details.