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BlackRock wins fiduciary mandate from Bpf Meubel

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The €3bn pension fund for the furniture industry (Bpf Meubel) has replaced SEI Investments with BlackRock as its fiduciary manager.

SEI Investments has been both fiduciary manager and asset manager of 80% of Meubel’s investment portfolio, as well as its interest-rate hedge.

“We have appointed BlackRock, as we wanted to increase our grip on our investment portfolio,” said Rob van Dijk, executive trustee of Pensioenfonds Meubel in a statement.

Pensioenfonds Meubel has allocated 46% to fixed income and 29% to equity. Last year, it returned 0.94% on investments.

Meubel’s contract with SEI Investments was for an indefinite period, but could be cancelled at any moment. Last year, it paid SEI €6.5m for its services.

Meubel could not be contacted to confirm whether SEI would remain as asset manager.

Meubel has more than 16,000 active participants, 23,490 pensioners, and more than 60,000 deferred members. At March-end, its funding stood at 100.4%.

During the past few years, several pension funds have separated fiduciary management and actual asset management.

Earlier this year, the scheme for the bakery sector (Bakkers) switched to NN Investment Partners for fiduciary services, leaving Lombard Odier, which had also been managing the pension fund’s European equity and bonds.

The sector scheme for private security (Particuliere Beveiliging) for its turn moved its fiduciary mandate from PGGM to BMO.

Last month, the €18bn occupational scheme for general practitioners (Huisartsen) said it would also split its fiduciary and asset management. Currently, it has outsourced both its asset management and fiduciary management to PGGM.

Pensioenfonds Meubel is among the industry-wide schemes that have to leave Syntrus Achmea Pensioenbeheer, as the provider’s IT system could no longer cope with their multitude of pension plans.

It is the first scheme that is prepared to move its administration to Gouda-based IT firm Centric, which has offered a collective transfer for industry-wide schemes in co-operation with Syntrus Achmea.

However, four of the six schemes involved have not yet decided whether to take up the offer. The pension fund for the woodprocessing and yacht-building sector (Houtverwerkende Industrie en Jachtenbouw) has decided to outsource its administration to Delta Lloyd.

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