UK/SWITZERLAND - Swisscanto is set to offer its specialist fixed income and global equity offering to UK pension schemes for the first time following an internal strategic review.
The Swiss fund management firm has managed investments in London for nearly 22 years - but has, up to now, only offered its products to Swiss clients.
It said it had appointed Rob Barrett as head of UK institutional business as part of its move into the UK institutional market. Prior to this, Barrett held a similar role at HSBC Global Asset Management.
Barrett said: "After we expanded in Germany, the move towards UK institutional clients was the way forward.
"Swisscanto is quite a conservative investor and we believe the UK market needs good traditional asset management. We are targeting corporate pension funds, local authorities and multi-managers."
Barret said the firm was already in "early stage" talks with UK schemes and investment consultants. He added: "What emerged from our conversations with them is that schemes are looking for a combination of both low risk investments and alpha generating ones.
"On the one hand you have the core investments which Swisscanto can provide - single digits performance over the benchmark - through long only corporate and sovereign bonds funds and global equities funds. But schemes are also still looking for satellite allocations to asset classes such as hedge funds."
Barrett will work with director of consultant relations Gitu Panjabi and focus on UK consultants and multi-managers.
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