Luba Nikulina, global head of research at WTW, has joined IFM Investors as its first chief strategy officer.

Based in London and joining the global executive team, Nikulina will lead the development of IFM’s global strategy with a focus on private markets solutions that meet the needs of Australian and global pension funds and their members.

Nikulina is highly motivated by IFM’s purpose to protect and grow the long-term retirement savings of working people and sustainable investing.

”I first came accross IFM back in 2008 and was immediately impressed with the idea that pension funds had been able to collaborate and create investment solutions that perfectly fit their needs,” she said in a video on LinkedIn about her new role.

With more than 25 years of investment industry experience, Nikulina joins from WTW (previously known as Willis Towers Watson), where she was global head of research, advising some of the world’s largest asset owners on strategy, governance and investments, managing a team of more than 100 analysts.

Luba Nikulina at IFM

Luba Nikulina, IFM Investors

During her time at WTW, she worked in London and New York and was responsible for establishing the consultancy’s private markets capabilities.

In line with IFM’s collaborative approach, Nikulina served on the UK government’s Social Impact Investing Taskforce, City of London’s Socioeconomic Diversity Taskforce, co-chaired the Investment Consultants Sustainability Working Group and has contributed to numerous other global collaborative cross-industry initiatives.

She has been included in the FN100 Most Influential Women in European Finance list for the past eight years, holds an AMP degree from Harvard Business School and an MBA from the London Business School.

“I’m excited to have Luba joining IFM Investors in the newly-created role of chief strategy officer. She will lead IFM’s global strategy to continue to meet the needs of our investors and their members, such as nurses, teachers, construction and hospitality workers,” said IFM’s chief executive officer David Neal.

Nikulina said in a post on LinkedIn: “My last 17 years at WTW has been a fantastic journey, full of learning, achievement and collaboration. Leading the world class research team has been an absolute privilege, serving our clients has been the highlight of my career and having the opportunity to contribute to cross-industry collaboration has been hugely fulfilling personally. I would like to say thank you to all my amazing colleagues, clients and partners, inside and outside WTW. I look forward to staying in touch and celebrating your future successes.”

She said she was excited about her new role at IFM. “I am joining at a time when the critical role of long-term capital has never been clearer in addressing some of the world’s most pertinent challenges while delivering strong risk-adjusted returns to investors. Leveraging its impressive private markets credentials, IFM is uniquely positioned to continue its journey of collaboration and innovation with the ultimate purpose of protecting and growing the retirement savings of working people,” she added.

“I look forward to building on these strong foundations and enhancing IFM’s investment offering for the benefit of IFM’s investors, who represent millions of working people globally.”

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