NETHERLANDS - The €3.2bn occupational pension fund for the Dutch merchant navy (Bedrijfspensioenfonds voor de Koopvaardij), has appointed fiduciary manager Mn Services to act as a multi-manager and adviser to the fund.

A spokesman for Mn Services stopped short of describing this to IPE as the Dutch merchant shipping fund adopting fiduciary management, and instead stressed Mn Services will be responsible for managing the fund's assets as a multi-manager as well as have an advisory role, both at a strategic level and on investment policy, but is also known for its expertise in fiduciary management.

The fund appointed investment consultant Watson Wyatt last year to review its investment arrangement after reviewing Achmea as a fund manager. (See earlier IPE story: Dutch navy sinks Achmea)

It is now unclear what will happen to F&C's status as investment manager to the fund following Mn's appointment, as pension fund officials were unavailable for comment at the time of publication.

That said, the Mn Services spokesman said "the transition will now begin and take around two months".

But in a written statement a pension fund spokesman described the decision to hand the mandate to Mn Services as  "a close finish", further arguing "the decisive factor for us was the balance between the quality of the services on offer and Mn Services' understanding of the specific nature of our fund".

The Merchant navy fund, which now provides pensions benefits for 55,000 members, and on behalf of over 200 employers had a cover ratio in mid-February 2008 of 146%.

As one of the largest asset managers and pensions administrators in the Netherlands, Mn Services today manages assets of over €61bn and administers the pensions of over 1.1 million people and over 33,000 employers.

If you have any comments you would like to add to this or any other story, contact Julie Henderson on + 44 (0)20 7261 4602 or email