People moves: LPFA hires to strengthen ESG capability
LPFA, DNB, T Rowe Price, Pensioenfonds Notariaat, SSGA, Robeco, PLSA, IBM, KLM, Kirstein, Dutch Actuarial Society, KPMG
London Pensions Fund Authority (LPFA) – The £4.5bn local government pension scheme has appointed Nigel Topping and Barbara Weber to its trustee board. Weber is founding partner of B Capital Partners, a specialist adviser on infrastructure and clean energy investments. She worked in infrastructure, private equity and project finance roles at Dresdner Kleinwort Benson and PolyTechnos before setting up B Capital Partners in Switzerland in 2003.
Topping is CEO of We Mean Business, a coalition of organisations focused on climate change. He was executive director of the Carbon Disclosure Project between 2013 and 2015.
LPFA’s board recently adopted a new investment policy aligned with London mayor Sadiq Khan’s policy on divestment. Where the scheme’s fiduciary duty permits, LPFA “will not consider new active investments in fossil fuel companies directly engaged in the extraction of coal, oil and natural gas as sources of energy which are ignoring the risks of climate change”, the fund said. It has also stated its intention to divest from existing holdings in such companies, if engagement is not possible and there is no financial detriment to the fund.
DNB – Pensions regulator De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) has named Albert van der Meer as supervisor of medium-sized pension funds as of 1 September. He joins from Strategeon Investment Consultancy, where he has worked since 2011. At Strategeon, Van der Meer advised pension funds on risk management, risk budget, the assessment of fiduciary asset managers, and operational processes at asset managers and pension funds.
T Rowe Price – Peter Preisler, head of global investment services for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), is to leave the asset manager later this year. Preisler has worked at T Rowe Price for more than 14 years, having previously spent 15 years at Danske Bank in various senior roles. He is leaving “to pursue other opportunities in the industry outside of the group”, said Robert Higginbotham, head of global investment services.
Higginbotham – who will take on Preisler’s responsibilities – added that he had played a “key role” in T Rowe Price’s development in Europe. “I would like to thank Peter for everything he has done for our clients, our associates, and our firm. He leaves with our very best wishes for the future,” Higginbotham said.
Pensioenfonds Notariaat – Sjoerd Hoogterp is to leave as director of the new €2.7bn merged pension fund for notaries and their staff, as of 1 September. Initially director of the pension fund for notaries (SNPF), Hoogterp had been closely involved in the merger of SNPF and the scheme for notaries’ staff (SBMN) during the past two years. Previously, he was temporary director of the pension funds PWRI and Sabic as well as the schemes Mercurius (PMA) and Celtona that have liquidated. Currently, Hoogterp is a board member of the €8.9bn sector scheme for the hospitality industry (Horeca & Catering). He is also chief financial officer at publisher SDU.
State Street Global Advisors – SSGA has appointed Jacqueline Lommen as senior defined contribution (DC) pensions strategist for Northern Europe. Based in Amsterdam, Lommen will become responsible for developing SSGA’s DC operations, focusing on the Netherlands as well as cross-border arrangements. Lommen joins from asset manager Robeco, where she was vice president for European pensions. Prior to this, she co-headed the pan-European pensions department of Aon Hewitt and was responsible for Aon’s first cross-border IORPs in Belgium. Lommen has also worked at DNB and Aegon.
Separately, SSGA has also hired Rakhi Kumar as head of environmental, social and governance (ESG) and asset stewardship, while Matt DiGuiseppe and Robert Walker have been appointed to lead the asset stewardship team’s work in the Americas and EMEA, respectively. Lynn Blake, CIO for global equity beta strategies, said the expanded stewardship team would “enable us to capitalise on the success of our asset stewardship programme and position us for continued growth in ESG”.
“ESG concerns continue to play a larger role in asset management, not only as an investment tool, but also as a way to assess and engage the companies our clients invest in through index strategies,” added Kumar.
Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) – The UK’s trade body for pension schemes has named Chris Hogg, chief executive of Royal Mail Pension Trustees,as chair of its defined benefit council. In addition, Carol Young, head of pensions, policy and products at Royal Bank of Scotland, has been appointed chair of its defined contribution council. The two councils are responsible for developing policy positions and improving PLSA member representation. The pair will take up their new positions from 20 October 2017, coinciding with the trade body’s annual conference.
Pensioenfonds IBM – Rijk Griffioen and Rob Houweling have joined the board of the €4.5bn pension fund of IBM in the Netherlands (SPIN), succeeding Paul Snoek and Joep Wijffels. Griffioen had been nominated by the employer. Previously, he was an investment manager at SPIN and a pensions manager at IBM Japan, and has also worked at IBM Retirement Funds EMEA. Houweling was nominated by the works council, and was previously chairman of SPIN’s former participants council.
Algemeen Pensioenfonds KLM – The €8.3bn KLM pension fund for ground staff has named Marianne Meijer-Zaalberg as board member on behalf of the scheme’s pensioners. She succeeds Henny Essenberg, who has stepped down. Currenty, Meijer chairs the supervisory board of the sector pension fund for public libraries (Openbare Bibliotheken) and is also a member of the visitation committees of several schemes. Prior to this, she was a senior pensions lawyer at law firm Loyens & Loeff and director of the €347m pension fund Sagittarius, the company scheme of electronics wholesale firm Rexel.
Kirstein – Mikkel Kirkegaard Hansen has been hired by Kirstein Intelligence as an investment consultant with effect from 1 August. He will manage customer relations with certain asset managers, advising clients using information collected by Kirstein from investors in Europe, the firm said. Kirkegaard Hansen previously worked at Danske Bank Wealth Management.
Actuarial Society – The Dutch Actuarial Society and the Actuarial Institute have appointed Hans Duijn as their new chief executive officer as of 1 August. He succeeds Jeroen Breen, who headed both organisations since June 2011. Previously, Duijn was chairman of pensions insurance at Achmea and director of group life at insurer Fortis/ASR. He has also served on the boards of the Dutch Association of Insurers, employer organisation VNO-NCW and pensions think tank Netspar.
KPMG – The accountancy and consulting giant has hired Neil Macdonald as a managing director in its asset management business. The newly created London-based role was designed to improve the company’s ability to help clients navigate major issues such as new technologies, new regulations and Brexit. KPMG said. Macdonald has held senior positions at asset managers JP Morgan, BlackRock and Barclays Global Investors.