UK – David Morgan, chief executive of Coal Pension Trustee Services, has been appointed as non-executive chairman of new pension fund monitoring firm Blacket Research.

Edinburgh-based Blacket was set up recently by Scottish Widows Investment Partnership institutional marketing director Roger Brown.

Morgan, who remains at the coal scheme full-time and is about three years away from normal retirement age, received approval for the appointment from his trustees.

“It’s all open and above board,” Morgan said, when asked if the move presented a potential conflict of interest. He told IPE his role would be to ensure the good governance of the company and help identify business development opportunities.

He said he was attracted to the firm because it is the only firm which systematically measures investment consultants. “One of the biggest challenges facing trustee boards today is assessment of their investment consultants.

"In years to come, we'll regard independent measuring of consultants as even more important than the independent measurement of managers that we take for granted today.

Blacket’s pension fund clients include Scottish & Newcastle and Sainsbury’s, Brown added – saying Bracket is seeing “tremendous” interest from pension schemes.

Blacket, which recently gained new investors and named former Baillie Gifford chief executive Gavin Gemmell as adviser, is launching services aimed at helping pension trustees improve their scheme governance.

Brown added: “David is a well known, forward-thinking, industry figure with outstanding credentials both as a chief executive and a pensions manager.”