UK - The £300m (€438m) Woolworths Group Pension Scheme is to put 10% into alternative investments including property and active currency following an investment review by Hewitt Associates.

The new strategy will see a 70% allocation to equities, with 20% going to bonds and the balance into alternatives.

"The new allocation sees the equities invested between Wellington Investment Management (benchmark driven approach), Orbis (unconstrained approach) and Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM, passive approach).  The bonds are equally divided between Rogge Global Partners (unconstrained bonds) and LGIM (passive bonds)," Hewitt said.

"The focus of our strategy over the last 12 months has been to build on the success of the last three years, to look at our valuation, and then to take a view on the right investment strategy to follow going forward," said Lis Browning, group pensions manager at Woolworths.

"Woolworths is committed to providing excellent pension benefits for its employees and that demands that our trustees are fully up to speed with all developments. Hewitt enabled us to make good the time taken during valuation by providing our trustees with specialist training on all aspects of alternative asset classes and strategy."

Andrew Tunningley, head of Hewitt's UK investment practice, Hewitt Associates, added: "Woolworths gave us a clear brief to make them ready for the results of their valuation.  That meant that we were able to work with them through a full strategy review and make manager selections and asset transfers within just six weeks.

"The profile of the Woolworths Scheme is very different when compared to the average scheme, so it was vital that its trustees understood the key drivers behind the investment strategy and acted accordingly."