Sector Insights

Pension Funds Industry Perspectives

November 2014

Our research with over 130 pension fund executives explored some of the key trends shaping the industry today — and how funds are adapting to meet the challenges and opportunities these trends bring.

Ten of the executives we spoke to give their insight into how the industry is changing, and what their organisations are doing to set themselves up for success in this new environment.

Wylie Tollette, California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS)

CalPERS is the largest public pension fund in the US, with more than $283.8 billion in assets. Chief investment officer Wylie Tollette explains why the firm is taking a long-term view to managing risk.

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Hanna Hiidenpalo, Elo Mutual Pension Insurance Company

Formed in 2013, through the merger of Pension Fennia and LocalTapiola Mutual Pension Insurance Company, Elo is now using its in-house capability to deliver greater value. Chief investment officer Hanna Hiidenpalo reveals how.

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Richard Brandweiner, First State Super

Chief investment officer Richard Brandweiner tells us how First State Super, one of Australia’s largest superannuation funds, has started building more strategic partnerships with its asset managers.

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Timo Ritakalli, Ilmarinen

Chief investment officer and deputy chief executive Timo Ritakalli explains why Finnish firm Ilmarinen is putting its faith in a long-term investment strategy.

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Svein Stokke, KLP

Norwegian mutual insurance company KLP has turned to real estate and infrastructure as a way of driving value. Chief risk officer Svein Stokke shares the thinking behind this approach.

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Professor Gordon L. Clark DSc (Oxon) FBA, Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment

Professor Clark explains how the move to greater insourcing is also seeing pension funds create more equitable partnerships with their asset managers.

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Peter Borgdorff, PFZW

PFZW is a Dutch nonprofit foundation, controlled by trade unions and employers. Chief executive Peter Borgdorff explains the firm’s investment philosophy and why it is focused on consistently meeting its members’ pension expectations.

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Jim Christensen, Telstra Super

Telstra Super topped Australia’s superannuation fund performance league table during 2013-14. Chief investment officer Jim Christensen tells us that its success has been due to multi-strategy funds.

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John Pearce, UniSuper

UniSuper is the dedicated pension fund for people working in Australia’s higher education and research sector. Chief investment officer John Pearce explains why bringing more funds in-house has also improved its external asset management.

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Robin Diamonte, United Technologies Corp

UTC’s chief investment officer Robin Diamonte, who was appointed by President Obama to advise the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., explains why the industry is entering unknown territory as firms look to maximize returns while minimizing risk.

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