UK – A group of former investment bankers at Lazard have set up a consulting firm to focus on advising pension fund trustees.

But Penfida Partners stress they’re not in direct competition to established consultants such as Watson Wyatt.

Penfida joins a new batch of firms such as Blacket Research and Pension Advisor Review that offer a different type of advice to traditional consultants.

Founder Jonathan Dawson told IPE that Penfida wouldn’t aim to be a “gate keeper”. Instead it would complement existing skills. There was a new space opening up in the market, which did not entail giving direct investment advice.

“We’ve got decades of investment banking experience on how to cut deals and give advice,” he said.

Penfida would not advise corporates, he added: “We’ll only focus on the trustee space.” He added that the firm has had a number of encouraging conversations with trustees and solicitors.

Dawson and co-founder Paul Jameson both chaired Lazard pension funds amid the restructuring and flotation of Lazard last year.