Posted inBusiness moves

Mercer opens discretionary service in Singapore

Mercer has expanded its “delegated investment solutions” business into Singapore, targeting institutional investors with demand for alternative investments.

The expansion will see the firm target institutional investors in the region with a view to managing clients’ asset pools on their behalf.

Solutions include “implementation of both traditional and alternative investment strategies, asset allocation, manager implementation and integrated risk management,” the consultant said in the statement.

“Singapore’s increasingly sophisticated asset owners and the complexity of current market conditions has created a growing demand for more proactive investment solutions,” said Kian-lee Soon, Mercer principal and head of investments for ASEAN, who leads the newly launched business.

The firm expects clients would show more interest to use the service to build their alternative investments, a spokeswoman said.

Singapore investors “have been particularly interested in non-traditional assets,” she told FSA.

“However due to various challenges, for example, management of capital calls and distribution for private markets or being able to build a well-diversified hedge fund allocation, many have not pursued these alternatives investments.”

Mercer launched the service in Japan last November, and intends to expand further across Asia, the spokeswoman added, but without giving further details.

Such solutions have been offered by Mercer in North America, Europe and Australia, with $124bn of assets under management in total as of the end of 2015.

Some clients would ask Mercer to manage certain segments of their portfolio, such as alternatives investments, including hedge funds, private markets or other specialist asset classes (multi-asset credit or absolute return bonds), while maintaining Mercer as the advisor for other parts of their portfolio, the spokeswoman noted.

Potential clients in Singapore include government and quasi government investments, sovereign wealth funds to insurance companies, banks, wealth managers, family offices, pension funds, endowments and foundations.

Part of the Mark Allen Group.