UK roundup: Suffolk LGPS, BMW UK, Cameron Hume, Pemberton

first_imgSuffolk Pension Fund (SPF), the pension provider for 55,600 local government employees in the East Anglian county of Suffolk, has reported a 0.7% return for the year to 31 March on its £2.2bn (€2.8bn) portfolio, compared with 14.6% for the previous year. However, SPF said its most recent return was 0.5% higher than the average achieved by other local authority funds.SPF’s annualised return is now 7% for the three years, and 7.3% for the five years, to the same date.SPF invests exclusively in pooled funds. At 31 March, 50.5% of the portfolio was invested in equities (17.5% in the UK and 33% overseas), with 19.9% in fixed income (primarily global bonds).Property made up 11%, while 17.3% was in other alternatives, primarily absolute return (9.5%), private equity (3%) and infrastructure (2.4%).An interim valuation showed that the funding level at March was 78.5% and the actuarial deficit at that date £592m. In other news, BMW Group is proposing to close its two UK defined benefit (DB) pension schemes to future accrual from 1 June 2017 and to have staff join the company’s defined contribution (DC) scheme instead.The closure of the DB scheme would affect some 5,000 staff across all the company’s UK operations.BMW has launched a consultation on its proposal.Trade union Unite has said it will fight the plans “tooth-and-claw”.A spokeswoman for BMW said the cost and risk associated with DB schemes were making them increasingly unsustainable and unaffordable for members and companies like BMW. “BMW Group has always prided itself in providing excellent pensions for its staff and wants to act now to protect future pension provision for all its staff and to help protect the cost competitiveness of the UK as a manufacturing base,” she said.BMW’s DC scheme was launched in early 2014 and has more than 2,000 members.Meanwhile, Edinburgh-based investment management company Cameron Hume has teamed up with firms in Australia and Sweden as part of a plan to expand to the institutional business in new areas.The Scottish firm has signed distribution agreements with AFM Investment Partners in Melbourne, and Nordicus Capital, which covers the Nordic region from Stockholm.The partner companies will be responsible for identifying opportunities for Cameron Hume to work with institutional clients, including pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and insurance companies.Cameron Hume specialises in fixed income investments for large, sophisticated institutional clients, managing $600m (€535m) on behalf of Sanlam, a South African insurer.Lastly, Pemberton has launched a UK mid-market direct lending strategy, aiming to raise £500m for a sterling-denominated fund that will invest in dynamic mid-sized UK businesses.The asset management group said the new fund was anchored by two leading institutional investors, naming Legal & General Capital (LGC) as one, and will allow investors with long-term capital to take advantage of the financing gap created by banks’ withdrawal from new corporate lending. It expects a first close before the end of the year.John Doyle, head of origination UK at Pemberton, said its origination team had sourced more than 100 opportunities in the past 12 months “and, importantly, the UK’s decision to leave the European Union has not impacted this appetite”.The UK mid-market debt fund is Pemberton’s second, coming on top of one with a pan-European focus.last_img read more

CicLAvia comes to South Los Angeles for first time

first_imgThe Los Angeles County-based event CicLAvia will be coming to South Los Angeles for the first time on Dec. 7, and streets will be closed to motor vehicles, allowing the public to bike, walk, scooter and skate through open roads in an effort to promote alternative transportation culture.Beach cruisers · Students in the USC Bike Coalition participated in a Venice Beach bike ride with students from UCLA during an event last year. – Photo courtesy of Alex LeavittSouth LA CicLAvia routes will be divided into four “hubs” along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Central Avenue, connecting Leimert Park with Central Avenue. All hubs will offer merchandise, maps and information, free water, first-aid stations, restrooms and bike repair stations for minor repairs. Beginning at the northern end of the Central Avenue Hub, the route will continue into the Jazz Park, Exposition Park and Leimert Park hubs.According to CicLAvia Communications Director Robert Gard, CicLAvia works closely with the City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles Fire Deptartment and the Los Angeles Department of Transportation to work out the logistics and ensure event safety. Major intersections will not be closed for the event, as each major intersection on the route will still offer crossing points for vehicles.“We work very closely with the Los Angeles Metro and choose routes so that they are close to public transit lines to make the route easily accessible to people anywhere in L.A.,” Gard said. “[CicLAvia] teaches people that they can get around the city without the use of a car and that it’s possible to use alternative transportation, even in an urban setting.”CicLAvia aims to connect the communities of South Los Angeles and “[catalyze] vibrant public spaces … to transform our relationship with our communities and with each other,” according to the event website. Because the route will include Exposition Park, students like Will Brotherson, a second-year student in the Gould School of Law and member of the USC Bike & Transit Law Society, will attend to support Los Angeles Critical Mass, a community bicycle ride that bills itself as the largest such event in the United States. Brotherson believes such critical mass events have the ability to influence policy and infrastructure.“With all the public space we use, movements like LA Critical Mass and CicLAvia that encourage bike culture and improve transportation and bike infrastructure are a great way to give back to the community,” Brotherson said.Brotherson believes events like CicLAvia prompt conversation and encourage bicycling as a fun and affordable mode of alternative transportation.“CicLAvia and all these critical mass movements are expanding every year and becoming more and more mainstream,” Brotherson said. “A lot of people, especially in [Los Angeles], think you have to have a car, but these events are like the antidote to that mindset of car culture.”The USC Bike Coalition has also been promoting CicLAvia, as the campus organization has participated in group rides from USC to Downtown in past CicLAvia events.Alex Leavitt, the USC Bike Coalition’s communications coordinator, said the event is a great way to promote improvement of biking infrastructure around campus and in the greater L.A. area.According to Leavitt, groups like the USC Bike Coalition embrace events like CicLAvia in the effort to support conversation and culture around various forms of bicycling in the hopes of making urban centers more receptive to alternative transportation.“There have been recent calls by the city to help support infrastructural improvements for bikers and [it] just recently approved the MyFigueroa project, which would implement separated and safer bike lanes to and from campus and Downtown,” Leavitt said.last_img read more

Philo Germano wins mile run at ECAC/IC4A Indoor Championships

first_imgSyracuse only had four runners compete in the 2018 Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) and Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletes of America (IC4A) Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships, but Philo Germano made his presence known. On Sunday in Boston, Germano won the men’s mile run final with a time of 4:04.92 while teammate Simon Smith placed fourth with a time of 4:07.23.On Saturday, Nathan Henderson just missed the men’s mile final, placing 11th. In the women’s mile, Sydney Leiher also didn’t advance, placing 15th.Next up for the Orange is the NCAA Indoor Championships on March 9 at Texas A&M. After that, the Orange will start its outdoor season at the Florida Relays on March 29. Comments Published on March 4, 2018 at 4:05 pm Contact Eric: Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

GAA urged to change Player of the Year voting system

first_imgTipperary’s Seamus Callanan and Pádraic Maher controversially missed out on the hurling prize last month.The Premier’s Josh Keane and Jimmy Feehan were also nominated for the young footballer gong.While Michael Bourke doesn’t have anything against those that won he believes the way in which they were selected needs to be altered.last_img