Barclays Global Investors (BGI) has enjoyed mixed fortunes during the summer mandate appointments, with two significant wins accompanied by a disappointing loss.
Belgacom, the Belgian telecommunications group and the country's largest pension fund with assets of approximately BFr82bn ($2.2bn), has appointed Barclays Global Investors (BGI) to manage a new BFr8.5bn specialist indexed global equity mandate.
The amount awarded is new money put into the scheme by Belgacom to meet the underfunding of its pension obligations, and with the aim of obtaining better international diversification for the fund.
BGI was chosen after a rigorous selection process, from a shortlist of eight managers for its due diligence, favourable investment philosophy and reasonable fees," according to Philip Neyt, general manager of the Belgacom pension fund.
BGI has also been appointed as sole investment manager to the £230m ($368m) UK Audit Commission Pension Scheme, auditors for UK local authorities and the national health service, after capturing a £130m passive mandate, previously managed on an active basis by incumbent Schroders Investment Management.
BGI already manage a £100m index brief for the fund, and the new mandate will be split, with half tracking the FTSE All-Share Index and the balance, a specialist global equities index.
Paul Punter, pensions manager at the Audit Commission said: "We made the decision to move to an entirely passive portfolio after a comprehensive review of our investment strategy, in which we found Schroders to be underperforming. As a result we decided active management was not adding any value in the long term, and with the risk and cost benefits of indexing proving compelling we compounded our positive experience to date with BGI."
Aon Consulting acted as advisers to the tender.
However, BGI has lost a £200m active indexed emerging markets mandate with Lucas Varity, the UK based automotive and aerospace technology company, to State Street Global Advisors (SSgA) following "increasing dissatisfaction" with the company's reporting reliability.
William MacDougall, acting chief investment officer at Lucas Varity Fund Management, said:" Our trustees were not happy with the speed of reporting, timing of evaluations and tracking errors. BGI responded to their complaints, but not quite fast enough, and so we appointed State Street in a straight swop, as they came a close second in our original tender two years ago."
Lucas Varity manages 95% of its £3.5bn pension fund in-house. Hugh Wheelan"