Railpen, Velliv, AP Pension, NBIM, NPT, Pensjonskasseforeningen, PIMCO, GRI, WTW, Allianz, Dalmore Capital, Barings, DPAM, Hymans Robertson

Railpen – The manager of the UK’s £35bn railways pension schemes, has hired Sally-Ann James as general counsel. She joined from Metro Bank plc.

Her appointment follows that of Ellen Watson-Hicks as Railpen’s first chief risk and compliance officer. Railpen used to call itself RPMI, but rebranded last month.

“I am very pleased to be joining as general counsel at this very exciting time for the business, as benefits administration, our fiduciary services and investment management come together under one name, Railpen,” said James. “I am looking forward to building an effective legal function and delivering legal services that meet the needs of the business, ensuring we deliver on our purpose of securing our members’ future.”

Velliv/AP Pension  – Peter Holm  has been appointed as the new head of social responsibility for the Danish mutual pension provider Velliv. He joins the firm from his current role as head of social responsibility at competitor AP Pension.

Prior to this, Holm also worked for Skandia between 2000 and 2019, in various managerial roles including head of corporate responsibility and communications director. Vellliv said Holm would take up his new job from 1 December.

Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM)/Fondsfinans Kapitalforvaltning  – Christian Preben Bang  is leaving the manager of Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, the Government Pension Fund Global, to take up the role of portfolio manager at Oslo-based fund management company Fondsfinans Kapitalforvaltning.

He has worked for NBIM for over seven years as an analyst and senior analyst, where his new employer said he focused on risk management and quantitative financial analysis. In his new job, Bang is to be responsible for Fondsfinans Kapitalforvaltning’s Fondsfinans Global Health (Fondsfinans Global Helse) portfolio, the firm said.

National Pension Trust (NPT)  – The UK multi-employer scheme has made three senior appointments in recent months “to further develop its proposition in response to significant growth in the business”. In the year to 30 September 2021, assets under management increased by 49% to over £1.25bn and membership grew to over 50,000.

Nick Cooper has been appointed as head of proposition development, Jackie Le Vey as client relationship manager, and Roz Watson as head of engagement. Cooper has previously held senior leadership roles in proposition and marketing for companies including Aviva, HBOS and Zurich International. Before joining NPT, Le Vey was a senior client relationship manager for some of Scottish Widows’ largest clients. Watson joins NPT from Capita, where she was head of engagement for the Atlas Master Trust. SEI has just acquired Atlas from Capita.

All three took up their roles at NPT between June and September 2021.

Christer Drevsjø at Pensjonskasseforeningen

Christer Drevsjø, Pensjonskasseforeningen

Norwegian Pension Fund Association  – Christer Drevsjø, who has been the acting leader of Norway’s Pension Fund Association (Pensjonskasseforeningen) since its general secretary Espen Kløw  resigned this summer, has now been appointed to lead the lobby group permanently.

Bjarne Refsnes, chair of the association’s board and chief executive officer of the Viken Pension Fund (Viken Pensjonskasse), announced that the recruitment process for a successor to Kløw had been completed, and that the board was unanimously in favour of hiring Drevsjø for the top job on a permanent basis.

Refsnes said the board had also decided to change the title of the association’s leader to CEO from general secretary. Drevsjø’s permanent role at the association was legal director. Kløw, whose previous roles on his LinkedIn profile include CEO of Mercer Norway, will formally end his employment with the Pension Fund Association at the end of this year.

PIMCO – The fixed income investment manager has hired Ayman Hindy  for the newly-created role of managing director overseeing portfolio management reengineering and infrastructure. He will be based in Newport Beach and will report to Dan Ivascyn, managing director and PIMCO group chief investment officer.

Hindy has a unique mix of experience in both investment management and academia, PIMCO said, “with a record of success in building trading platforms and infrastructure”. His range of skills in the hedge fund industry includes the development of fixed income relative value and macro trading strategies, risk management and oversight of business and regulatory issues.

In academia, he has authored ground-breaking research in leading academic journals, has served as an associate professor of finance at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, is a guest lecturer at leading business schools and has served on the advisory board of the Cairo Stock Exchange.

Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) – The setter of sustainability reoprting standards has announced the appointment of Eelco van der Enden as CEO. Starting 1 January 2022, van der Enden will join GRI from PwC, where he is global ESG platform leader for tax, legal, people and organisation services. He has already been a GRI board member for two years and served on the committee that designed the GRI Tax Standard.

“With corporate transparency on the global agenda like never before, Eelco brings the expertise and energy we need to deliver our robust independent standards and accelerate our engagement with partners around the world,” said Eric Hespenheide, chair of GRI. “I believe he will help GRI build on its position of strength, as provider of the world’s most widely used sustainability reporting standards, while enabling us to increase our relevance with stakeholders around the world.”

Dimensional Fund Advisors  – Jim Whittington  has been appointed as head of responsible investment for Dimensional Fund Advisors. He replaces Joe Chi, who will retire at the end of the year. Additionally, the firm named Lacey Huebel as head of responsible investment, North America. Both appointments are effective 1 November.

Whittington brings valuable experience to the role, having served as a senior portfolio manager and vice president in the firm’s London Office, in addition to his work as a member of Dimensional’s investment stewardship committee. For years, he has been on the front lines of Dimensional’s ESG initiatives in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, working with clients, managing portfolios, and representing the firm with industry organizations.

Like Whittington, Huebel brings a wealth of knowledge to her new role, having managed the firm’s social and sustainable fixed income portfolios since their inception. She frequently represents Dimensional on ESG matters both with clients and at conferences. In addition to her new role, Huebel will continue to serve as portfolio manager and vice president.

Willis Towers Watson  – The consultancy has named Thomas Jasper as the new head of the retirement division, covering occupational pensions, in Germany and Austria. Jasper succeeds Heinke Conrads, who will leave the company at the end of the year to join the executive board at Allianz. Jasper has been head of retirement Europe at Willis Towers Watson since 2018, representing a first point of contact for multinational companies as client relationship manager. He served in the position of head of retirement in Germany and Austria from 2011 to 2017.

Allianz  – The German insurer has reshuffled the executive boards at subsidiaries Allianz Leben and Allianz Versicherung following losses suffered during the pandemic from its Structured Alpha Hedge Funds run by Allianz Global Investors (AGI) for institutional investors in the US.

Katja de la Viña, the group’s chief financial officer, will be replaced by Laura Gersch  at Allianz Versicherung and by Martin Riesner  at Allianz Leben, from January.

Heinke Conrads at WTW

Heinke Conrads, Allianz

Gersch has been a board member responsible for corporate customers and HR at Allianz Leben, while Riesner as been head of the product development and actuarial department and responsible actuary at Allianz Leben since 2017.

Neamwhile, De la Viña is taking over the position of CEO of Allianz Leben from Andreas Wimmer from January. She will also take over the HR department at Allianz Leben from Gersch, while Wimmer succeeds Jacqueline Hunt  as a member of the management board at Allianz, head of the asset management division and Allianz Life in the U.S.

Hunt was a management board member responsible for asset management, appointed as a strategic consultant to the group’s CEO Oliver Bäte.

Additionally, Heinke Conrads, head of the retirement division in Germany and Austria at Willis Towers Watson, will take over Gersch’s position as a board member at Allianz Leben responsible for corporate customers.

Dalmore Capital  – Vicky Chan has joined the infrastructure fund manager as director. She has more than 15 years of infrastructure experience, most recently as a principal with Corsair Capital, acting as a shareholder representative on the boards of Kelda Holdings, Itinere Infraestructuras and DP World Australia.

Barings  – The investment manager is further expanding its German team with the addition of Magnus Lilja as a senior member of its global private finance group, effective 1 October 2021. Lilja is responsible for Barings’ private finance activities in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, including the initiation, analysis, structuring and monitoring of investments.

Lilja is a native of Sweden, but has worked in the industry in Germany since 2004. He is fluent in German, Swedish, English and Polish. Prior to joining Barings, Magnus was head of leveraged finance Germany at SEB.

Hymans Robertson – The pensions and financial services consultancy has appointed Claire O’Neill to further expand its risk transfer team. She joins from Mercer’s risk transfer team where she focused on helping clients reduce the risk in their defined benefit pension schemes through a range of de-risking strategies, including both risk transfer transactions and member options exercises.

O’Neill has worked and advised on a variety of bulk annuity transactions, ranging from £13m to £1bn in size.

Degroof Petercam Asset Management (DPAM) – The board of directors of DPAM has confirmed its decision to appoint Peter De Coensel, previously CIO fixed income and member of the board of directors, as CEO. He succeeds Hugo Lasat, who will take over the function of CEO at the parent company Degroof Petercam and in this new function will also chair the board of directors of DPAM.

As part of this development, Sam Vereecke, currently senior fund manager fixed income, will take over from De Coensel as CIO fixed income. In anticipation of these personnel changes, DPAM has strengthened its structures to ensure both the quality and continuity of its investment approach and strategies.

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