July 2007

MANDATE WATCH: Chaucer appoints hedge fund advisor

Watson Wyatt, an investment advisory firm, has won a mandate to provide investment consulting services to Chaucer Holdings. The investment advisory appointment, which includes the selection and monitoring of Chaucer’s hedge fund investments, follows other recent appointments in the non-life insurance sector. Chaucer Holdings is a specialist insurance underwriting group listed in London. Roger Boulton, senior investment consultant at Watson Wyatt, said: “Successful hedge fund investing, in terms of both risk management and return generation, has become increasingly challenging as rapid asset growth has led to a profusion of investment managers and aggressive fee structures.” He added: “However, we believe there is significant value to be added through selecting the right managers and strategies and we look forward to providing Chaucer with independent investment advice in this area.” In a separate appointment, Mercer Investment Consulting has become the investment consultant to the North Yorkshire Pension Fund – a UK public scheme with £1.2bn in assets under management. Mercer previously worked with North Yorkshire County Council on a project basis but will now take on formal responsibility for ongoing investment consulting. Neil Sellstrom, principal accountant with the fund, said: “Mercer scored well against all of our criteria but we were particularly impressed with the risk analysis and strategic asset allocation tools supported by a knowledgeable and pragmatic team." © fe July 2007

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