Schroders Capital, Cartwright, FAIRR, People’s Partnership, Aviva Investors

Cartwright – The pension specialist for defined benefit (DB) and hybrid schemes has recruited Ian McKnight as senior adviser, with an initial focus on business development. Based in London, he will be responsible for supporting and developing new business strategies across the company.

McKnight’s appointment is the latest in a string of high-level appointments for the firm which saw Yona Chesner join as senior investment consultant and head of investments (North) last month, and the appointment of Barry Widdows as senior investment consultant and Southwest lead in December 2023.

McKnight joins from Royal Mail Pensions Trustees where he was chief investment officer. He managed Royal Mail Pension Plan’s 2012 transfer of assets (£32.5bn) to the UK government and went on to manage over £10bn across three pension plans, investing approximately £400m per year over his 13-year tenure and leaving the plan over £1bn in surplus.

He is a sitting trustee of the Rowland Hill Fund, a charity helping current and past postal workers in financial need. Over his extensive 25-year career he has also held positions at WTW, LCP, Morgan Stanley, and KPMG.

People’s Partnership – The provider of The People’s Pension has appointed Alice Leighton as marketing director, to drive forward engagement with its 6.5 million members.

Leighton will join the leading workplace pension provider in April from Royal & Sun Alliance (RSA), where she is currently head of brands, direct and customer, and responsible for brand strategy, marketing campaigns, content, and customer experience. She has more than 20 years’ experience in financial services marketing and has held various marketing and distribution roles across RSA’s broker, consumer (MORE THAN), and partnership brands including Nationwide, Tesco, John Lewis and Marks & Spencer.

In February, The People’s Pension was the first UK master trust to announce £25bn in assets under managemen t. The business continues to build its proposition with the recent introduction of a new set of retirement planning tools, a financial wellbeing offering, and a member app set to be launched later this year.

Schroders Capital – The specialist private markets division of the Schroders Group has appointed Ingo Heinen as its global head of business development and product.

In this newly-created role, Heinen will drive business development globally in partnership with Schroders’ client group and lead the evolution and management of Schroders Capital’s products and solutions, focused on delivering market-leading investment solutions for clients.This senior appointment marks the latest significant milestone in expanding Schroders Capital’s global platform, which currently provides investors with access across a variety of asset classes, including real estate, infrastructure and private equity, as well as private debt and credit alternatives investments. During 2023, Schroders Capital generated $11.6bn of fundraising across this suite of private market capabilities.

With his extensive sales and product development background, Heinen will spearhead Schroders Capital’s private markets fundraising efforts, engaging with clients worldwide. He brings significant experience to the role, previously serving as the head of marketing and client relations, EMEA, at Intermediate Capital Group (ICG), a global alternative asset manager in London. Previously, Heinen also spent 10 years at BlackRock, where he built and led the fundraising team for the alternative investments business in EMEA.

Aviva Investors – The firm has expanded the responsible investment (RI) team within its real assets unit with the appointments of Phillipa Grant, Elizabeth Ortiz and Jeremy Ho.

All reporting into Edward Dixon, head of RI, real assets, at Aviva Investors, Grant joins as director of sustainable investments, whilst Ortiz has been appointed as an associate, and Ho as an analyst.

Grant is a chartered engineer and joins Aviva Investors following eight years at AESG, a global advisory business, where she was a partner and global director of sustainability. In her new role, Grant will be responsible for delivering sustainability outcomes for clients across Aviva Investors’ real assets sustainable fund range, providing advice to support with strategy development and investment decisions, alongside delivery and reporting within portfolios.

Ortiz joins from KPMG where she was an assistant manager, leading on climate strategy development for corporate clients. In her role at Aviva Investors, she will focus on developing and delivering client sustainability objectives across private markets asset classes.

Ho previously worked at Pyxis Wealth Advisors and proSapient where he carried out cross-asset class research for hedge fund, private equity and ultra-high net worth family clients.

FAIRR – The initiative, a collaborative investor network backed by investors managing more than $70trn of assets, has announced Claire Berson as its new executive director. She will take up her role from 2 April 2024.

Founded by Jeremy Coller in 2015, FAIRR is the fastest growing global investor network by assets under management. It provides market data, research, tools and engagements to help investors understand material ESG risks and opportunities in the global food sector.

Berson is the former executive director of the Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI), an international investor-focused not-for-profit which mobilises the $100trn bond market towards climate change solutions, where she oversaw its global expansion across more than 20 countries with over 200 global partners. In her new role, Berson will be responsible for driving forward the FAIRR vision, leading its team to deliver high quality research, tools and engagements for the benefit of its more than 400 investor members.

Claire Berson is the second senior appointment made by FAIRR this year, with Fiona Reynolds, former chief executive officer of the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), joining in an advisory role as president in January.

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