CalPERS shortlists infrastructure advisors(4)

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) has shortlisted four firms vying to become the pension fund’s infrastructure consultant.

Meketa Investment Group, Pension Consulting Alliance, R.V. Kuhns & Associates and Wilshire Consulting are being considered by its investment committee for the role. Profiles of the shortlisted consultants are set to be presented to CalPERS’ investment committee next week, at a meeting scheduled for 14 September.

The four finalists were whittled down from a group of nine consultants that submitted proposals for the mandate to CalPERS, which is the biggest public pension fund in the US with $182 billion of assets, in July. The successful candidate will provide CalPERS with advice on the strategy, implementation and monitoring of the fund’s infrastructure portfolio, and providing and reviewing performance analysis and benchmarks, amongst other duties.

Following interviews with the shortlisted candidates, the Sacramento-based pension fund said in the agenda for the investment committee meeting that it intends to sign up its chosen infrastructure consultant for a renewable one-year term at the beginning of 2010.

CalPERS’ inflation-linked portfolio allocation is 5 percent. Within that allocation, infrastructure assets have the flexibility to move to as much as 3 percent of the overall portfolio value.

Last week pension investment advisor the Pension Consulting Alliance (PCA), whose clients include CalPERS, launched its search for an infrastructure investment manager. PCA said it is seeking a firm to design and manage a specialised infrastructure investment fund for pensions that could reach $2 billion in size.