Category: Press Releases

AEIA Links Up With Strutt & Parker

AllenbridgeEPIC Investment Advisers links up with Strutt & Parker Real Estate Financial Services for expert property investment advice.

AllenbridgeEPIC Investment Advisers (“AllenbridgeEPIC”) is pleased to announce the appointment of Strutt & Parker Real Estate Financial Services (“SPREFS”) as its preferred property investment adviser. SPREFS will use its institutional pedigree, specialist knowledge and expertise in the real estate industry to provide multi-manager services and advice on property exposure to AllenbridgeEPIC’s existing and future clients.

SPREFS already has a number of clients with £5million and upwards for which it has designed and now manages multi-manager indirect real estate portfolios. AllenbridgeEPIC, based in London’s Mayfair, was formed when Allenbridge Group PLC, the specialist investment advisory company acquired EPIC Investment Advisers, the leading independent consultant to pension fund trustees, from Syndicate Asset Management. AllenbridgeEPIC has representative offices in Glasgow and Lancaster and the SPREFS team will work with the panel of investment experts at AllenbridgeEPIC to provide each of their current and future clients with advice to cater for their appetite for property exposure.

Chris Edge, Chief Executive of AllenbridgeEPIC said:

“Our business blueprint brings together like-minded people, each of whom has a distinguished track record in the pensions and investment sector, in a partnership that deploys the most appropriate team to meet trustees’ specific requirements.

SPREFS bring unrivalled property expertise in being able to provide bespoke portfolio design services to achieve the desired risk/return profile for investors and is a perfect complement to the services we already provide to trustees.”

Philip Ingman, Managing Director of SPREFS, added:

“Our multi-manager service currently works with a number of investors in the pension fund industry and we are well placed to be able to provide similar expert property advice to AllenbridgeEPIC’s client base.

We are pleased to be able to enter into this agreement with AllenbridgeEPIC and are looking forward to our working together.”


AEIA Appointed as Independent Investment Adviser to the Hays Pension Scheme

AllenbridgeEPIC Investment Advisers Limited (“AEIA”) is pleased to announce that Hays plc has appointed AEIA as independent investment adviser to its £400 million pension scheme. AEIA Director and Senior Adviser, Alan Saunders, will act as the individual advising the trustees and has been appointed Chairman of the Scheme’s Investment Committee and as a trustee of the scheme.

By way of background, in 2007, Hays Pension Scheme carried out a strategic review of its management arrangements as a result of which Mercer was appointed as the ‘implemented consultant’ to the scheme. Following this move the scheme’s trustee board, chaired by Richard Main of Law Debenture, decided to strengthen the scheme’s independent oversight function by introducing an individual with previous investment management experience. This was the context of AEIA’s selection.

Commenting on AEIA’s appointment to the Fund Christopher Edge, Chief Executive, said:

“I am delighted that another significant private sector pension scheme has appointed us as their independent investment adviser. We very much look forward to working with the trustee of the Hays scheme to ensure that members’ benefits are met as cost-effectively as possible.”

“This appointment represents a further step in our involvement with corporate sector funds which complements the presence which AEIA has established in the Local Government sector (AEIA advises five LGPS funds* with a total value of assets under management of over £8.0 billion).”

Edge continued: “Newer approaches to investment consulting such as ‘implemented’ or ‘delegated’ consulting should be encouraged. In our view the core advantages of such approaches are the ability to diversify the allocation of pension scheme assets into a much wider range of asset classes and the opportunity for ‘real-time’ tactical asset allocation”.

“However, there is potential for conflicts of interest which accordingly increases the need for independent scrutiny of investment recommendations. Where an implemented or fiduciary form of management has been introduced, there is clearly a need for stronger oversight of the investment process. AEIA is delighted to have been appointed in this context to the Hays pension scheme”.

Stefan Bort, Hays plc Scheme Secretary said: “We are delighted to be working with AllenbridgeEPIC, to not only assist with advising the Hays Scheme on investments but to also complete the governance structure of our Trustee Board”.


AEIA Appointed for Governance and Compliance Audit by Dorset County Pension Fund

AllenbridgeEPIC Investment Advisers Limited (AEIA) is very pleased to announce that it has been appointed by the £1.4 Billion Dorset County Pension Fund to provide independent professional advisory services on governance and compliance. The context of this appointment is the recent issuance by the Department for Communities & Local Government (CLG) of draft regulations and statutory guidance relating to the preparation of a Governance Compliance Statement. The guidance provides a detailed description of each of the best practice principles against which compliance is to be measured.

The CLG refers to the participation of an independent professional observer in the governance arrangements to enhance the experience, continuity, knowledge, impartiality and performance of committees or panels. CLG suggests that such an appointment could improve the public perception that high standards of governance are a reality and not just an aspiration. The role of the independent observer is outlined as undertaking independent assessments of compliance against the Myners’ principles and other performance benchmarks, and to offer a practical approach to the management of risks.

Nick Buckland, Investment Manager at Dorset CC said: “The Pension Fund Committee has taken on board the best practice guidance issued by CLG and feel they have found an excellent solution in the form of AEIA and in particular Peter Scales who has unparalleled experience of LGPS Funds. We are greatly looking forward to building on our existing excellent relationship with AEIA, by working with Peter in monitoring and improving our governance arrangements over the next three years.”

Commenting on AEIA’s appointment to the Fund Christopher Edge, Chief Executive, said: “I am delighted that Dorset County Pension Fund has selected AEIA to conduct this important governance review work and welcome their innovative approach to this issue. It is clearly essential that the appointee is entirely independent, which is one of AEIA’s key principles. This is also most welcome following from the our recent appointment to a similar role with North Yorkshire Pension Fund”

Chris Edge also said: “Peter Scales, OBE, former chief executive of the London Pension Funds Authority and a Senior Adviser at AEIA, will act as the independent observer at Dorset County Pension Fund. Peter is ideally suited to carry out this review appointment given his deep knowledge and understanding of the administration of LGPS and other pension fund related matters. In addition, the Dorset Fund has demonstrated its intention to be a lead mover in this and other areas of developing best practice”.

Edge concluded, “AEIA looks forward to assisting other public and private sector schemes in this direction.” EIA now advises five LGPS funds*, with a total value of assets under management of over £8.0 billion. Our team of advisers, through their association with AEIA, benefit from FSA regulation and professional indemnity insurance cover, and have the full support of other advisers within AllenbridgeEPIC.


AEIA Appointed for Governance and Compliance Audit by North Yorkshire Pension Fund

AllenbridgeEPIC Investment Advisers Limited (AEIA) is pleased to announce that it has been appointed by the £1.2 billion North Yorkshire Pension Fund (NYPF) to provide independent professional advisory services on governance and compliance. The context of this appointment is the issuance by the Department for Communities & Local Government (CLG) of draft regulations and statutory guidance relating to the preparation of a Governance Compliance Statement. The guidance provides a detailed description of each of the best practice principles against which compliance is to be measured.

The CLG refers to the participation of an independent professional observer in the governance arrangements to enhance the experience, continuity, knowledge, impartiality and performance of committees or panels. CLG suggests that such an appointment could improve the public perception that high standards of governance are a reality and not just an aspiration.

The role of the independent observer is outlined as undertaking independent assessments of compliance against the Myners’ principles and other performance benchmarks, and to offer a practical approach to the management of risks.

Neil Sellstrom, Principal Accountant with the Fund said: “The Pension Fund Committee has taken on board the best practice guidance issued by CLG and feel they have found an excellent solution in the form of AEIA and in particular Peter Scales who has unparalleled experience of LGPS Funds. We are greatly looking forward to working with Peter in monitoring and improving our governance arrangements over the next three years.”

Commenting on AEIA’s appointment to the Fund Christopher Edge, Chief Executive, said: “I am delighted that North Yorkshire Pension Scheme has selected AEIA to conduct this important governance review work and welcome their innovative approach to this issue. It is clearly essential that the appointee is entirely independent, which is one of AEIA’s key principles.”

Chris Edge also said: “Peter Scales, OBE, former chief executive of the London Pension Funds Authority and a Senior Adviser at AEIA, will act as the independent observer at the North Yorkshire Fund. Peter is ideally suited to carry out this review appointment given his deep knowledge and understanding of the administration of LGPS and other pension fund related matters. In addition, North Yorkshire has again demonstrated its intention to be a lead mover in this and other areas of developing best practice”. Edge concluded, “AEIA looks forward to assisting other public and private

sector schemes in this direction.” EIA now advises five LGPS funds*, with a total value of assets under management of over £8.0 billion. Our team of advisers, through their association with AEIA, benefit from FSA regulation and professional indemnity insurance cover, and have the full support of other advisers within AllenbridgeEPIC.