The €4bn Dutch SNS Reaal pension fund is looking for a fiduciary manager because it wants to combine asset management and fiduciary management in one entity, it said in its annual report.
The assets of the fund, which manages the pensions of insurer Vivat and Volksbank, are currently managed by Actiam (formerly SNS AM) while Cardano is responsible for LDI management, derivatives and the fund’s €600m long-duration portfolio.
The fund is now looking for a single manager to combine these two tasks.
“The fund wants to simplify its structure. There are more than enough other things that require our attention at the moment,” said the fund’s director Eelco Blaauw.
The new fiduciary manager is supposed to help the fund with portfolio construction, reporting and the selection and monitoring of investments.
According to Blaauw, the selection procedure for the new fiduciary manager is “well underway”.
While the new fiduciary is supposed to select the bulk of the fund’s investments, SNS Reaal prefers to retain Actiam as the manager of the fund’s sustainable equity mandates, Blaauw added. “These mandates are very precious to us,” he said.
With around 20,000 members, some 5,000 of whom are active participants, SNS Reaal is a comparatively large company scheme. Nevertheless, it has been investigating consolidation options for some time as the number of active members is dwindling.
This trend was accelerated by the sale of Vivat’s property insurance arm to NN, as a result of which some 400 active members will move to the NN pension fund later this year. Volksbank also expects to reduce the number of employees over time.
“We are looking at all the options: to join an APF (Algemeen Pensioen Fonds) or a sector fund, or to remain independent,” said Blaauw. “The final choice is with Volksbank and Vivat. Both recently extended their contracts with us until the end of 2021.
“Like many pension funds, we are currently facing the choice whether we want to implement the new pensions contract ourselves or whether this is a moment to consolidate before this happens.”
The new Dutch pensions contract is supposed to come into force by 2026 at the latest.