Pensions & Investments' WorldPensionSummit recognized four initiatives for excellence in retirement across four categories in its 2020 Innovation Awards on Wednesday.
Presented during the annual WorldPensionSummit conference, which was held virtually, the awards recognized innovation in communication and engagement; plan design; technology; and investment.
The winners are:
- Ontario Medical Association, Toronto, for innovation in plan design.
OMA asked its not-for-profit insurance partner OMA Insurance to connect with retirement plan provider Common Wealth to design and deliver the Advantages Retirement Plan. It was established exclusively for OMA members and their spouses and partners. The first plan of its kind for physicians, the C$4 million ($3 million) Advantages Retirement Plan allows participants to select various investment and annuity options, and determine how much they want to contribute. The plan was specifically designed to be accessed by self-employed physicians who are unable to join other plans.
- Comision Nacional del Sistema de Ahorro para el Retiro, Mexico, for innovation in communication and engagement.
With many Mexicans currently failing to recognize the long-term benefits of retirement contributions, Consar — the regulatory and supervisory body of Mexico's pension system — recently launched the "Shop like always and earn free savings!" rewards program. The strategy includes a cash-back program that automatically credits to a user's retirement account. Currently more than 20 brands including Amazon, Starbucks and Spotify are signed up to the initiative. GanAhorro de AforeMovil leverages the popular AforeMovil application, which Consar created in 2017 to allow people to access their retirement accounts remotely.
- Nationwide Super, Sydney, for innovation in technology.
GoalTracker helps participants in the A$15 billion ($10.6 billion) Nationwide Super approach savings in the same way as they do health, using devices to set and track individual goals. GoalTracker's online portal or mobile application, with the use of proprietary modeling, produces an annual retirement income projection to determine whether there will be a shortfall in the savings needed for the lifestyle individuals have in mind for their retirement. GoalTracker then selects an optimal mix of assets to achieve a participant's goal, which is reviewed quarterly and adjusted automatically when needed.
- Fondo Pensione Nazionale per il personale delle banche di Credito Cooperativo Casse Rurali ed Artigiane, Rome, for innovation in investing.
Over the past two years, FPN had been gradually integrating environmental, social and governance factors into its investment process. In 2019, the fund started using metrics set by the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board. Using the SASB's ESG scores in its investment selection, FPN invested more than €300 million of its illiquid assets in securities with high ESG scores.
The judges also recognized runners-up in each category:
- A collaboration by Stichting Shell Pensioenfonds, The Hague; Shell NL Pensioen Stichting; SBZ Pensioen, The Hague; Achmea Pension Services, Zeist, Netherlands, for innovative plan design.
- KwaZulu-Natal Joint Municipal Pension/Provident Funds, Durban, South Africa, for innovative communication and engagement.
- A collaboration by APG Asset Management, Blue Sky Group, technology firm Hyfen, insurance company Nationale-Nederlanden and PGGM, for innovative technology.
- The A$54 billion Cbus Super, Victoria, Australia, for innovative investing.
The awards were presented by Chris Battaglia, CEO of the WorldPensionSummit and vice president and group publisher of P&I; Don Ezra, P&I advisory board member and former co-chairman, global consulting at Russell Investments; and Nikki Pirrello, associate group publisher at P&I.
Also during the conference, P&I's WorldPensionSummit recognized three initiatives in its inaugural Brightest Idea Award. The awards went to consulting firm Ario Advisory for its risk management idea, "Strategic Risk Management: MPT meets the SDGs"; carbon and climate data analytics firm Urgentem for its Element6 Climate Risk Platform; and non-profit organization Activate Global for its impact venture fund, the First Look Fund, with the aim of bringing science-based impact innovations to industry.
The winners were decided by conference delegates. Five firms pitched their ideas for the award.
Award judges were members of the WorldPensionSummit advisory board.