UK -- Dorset County Pension Fund has appointed London and New York-based fund of hedge funds manager International Asset Management (IAM) to manage a diversified portfolio of hedge funds.

The move is the latest of three fund of hedge fund mandates announced since the pension fund's asset liability structure was reviewed last year, says Nick Buckland, Dorset County Pension Fund investment officer.

"Absolute return funds were part of the study's recommendations as was a rejig of the assets we have," he said. "We made no other managerial changes but we moved some of the money around so we now have less in UK equities and a bit more in overseas equities and bonds.

UK equities are managed in-house, overseas equities are managed by Pictet Asset Management and bonds by Prudential M&G, Buckland said.

"The restructuring involves a little over 5% of the portfolio being placed in absolute return funds," he added. "A couple of months ago we appointed Pioneer and Gottex to manage about £22m each and IAM is the third appointment. It will manage some £10m initially."

Dorset County Pension Fund, which currently has about £900m in assets under management, is one of the first UK regional pension funds to invest in hedge funds. "It was a long process to choose hedge fund managers and we used Bfinance to assist in the process," said Buckland.