The chief executive of Royal Mail Pension Trustees has urged pension funds to work together more and called for smaller schemes to appoint joint chief investment officers (CIOs).
Speaking at the NAPF 2015 conference, Chris Hogg (pictured) said schemes of all sizes had nothing to lose from closer collaboration.
For smaller funds he said this could involve four or five clubbing together to appoint a "part time chief investment officer" to look at their investment portfolios.
Hogg said larger schemes could follow the example of Local Government Pension Schemes that are exploring collective investment vehicles, or could simply come together to share ideas.
"For schemes of all different sizes there is undoubtedly value in some sort of sharing," he said.
"Smaller schemes could club together with other small schemes, to create that larger investment portfolio, essentially to justify paying for some sort of CIO or similar.
"A part time CIO is the concept, or even a temporary part time CIO. Get them in for one or two years, four or five small schemes, get them to go through the portfolio and probably change some mandates, probably get you much lower fees and therefore justify that expenditure."
Hogg's scheme has recently overhauled its governance structure to help its trustees focus on the most important strategic elements of their role.
He said the Royal Scheme would be happy to share its experience with like-minded schemes.
"If you're a bigger scheme, you might not go as far as a formal arrangement," he said. "But sharing ideas has to be good, and if anyone wants to have a chat with Royal Mail about this then please do so, because I don't see any disadvantage in sharing ideas with a small number of the right schemes, who we think would have ideas that we might be interested in. If I shared some of our investment ideas with three or four schemes, it's not going to affect our ability to invest."
Hogg also called on medium sized schemes to take more resources in-house, urging them to use hard numbers to sell the idea to sponsors.
"A five basis point reduction in fees across your investment portfolio, which may be achievable if you get the right person in, on £1bn scheme, that's £500,000 a year. You could use that to justify that resource."
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