The £1.5 billion Willis Pension Scheme is sticking with a familiar face to manage a new £100 million hedge fund portfolio.
The pension fund picked its investment consultant, Towers Watson, to handle what is in effect a huge fund of hedge funds mandate. Towers currently manages some US$7 billion in such mandates, Financial News reports.
"As a hedge fund investment business, we are not quite at the level of a BlackRock or a JPMorgan, but we are in a pretty good place," Chris Ford, who heads European investment consulting at Towers, told FN. "Nor are we at the US$500 million level, where a few funds of funds have been going out of business lately."
Towers' bid for Willis' business was no doubt helped by the price; according to Ford, Willis will pay significantly less than the average fees for funds of funds.