AustralianSuper’s former Head of Equities, Innes McKeand, has left to join UK Pension Fund USS, where he will establish a new global equities team.
Innes McKeand, the former Head of Equities at AustralianSuper, has taken up a new role at the Universities Superannuation Scheme, the largest private pension scheme in the United Kingdom.
McKeand will start as Head of Equities at USS Investment Management, a wholly-owned investment arm of the pension fund, at the end of March this year.
“I am delighted to be returning to the UK to join USS Investment Management,” McKeand said.
“Opportunities to grow and shape a strategy from within the context of such a major investor are few and far between. And coming at a time when longer-term issues such as responsible investing are having such a major impact on investment makes this a very exciting time indeed,” he said.
McKeand, who spent nine years with AustralianSuper in Melbourne, will oversee the existing teams that focus on global emerging markets equities and responsible investments as well as our approach to using quantitative techniques in equities strategies.
[Innes McKeand] will establish a new global equities team. Central to the role will be the objective to construct portfolios that will provide attractive risk-adjusted returns relative to its long-term liabilities, which will see the pension fund move away from market-cap weighted benchmarks.
He will also establish a new global equities team. Central to the role will be the objective to construct portfolios that will provide attractive risk-adjusted returns relative to its long-term liabilities, which will see the pension fund move away from market-cap weighted benchmarks.
USS anticipates that, over time, most of its assets that are currently overseen by BlackRock, as a transition manager, will be taken back in-house by USS Investment Management.
These assets are currently invested in Japan, the US, the UK and Europe, and totalled £11.4 billion as at 31 December 2020.
“We are delighted to welcome Innes to the team as we pivot towards a longer-term, more thematic strategy for our investments in equities,” Simon Pilcher, Chief Executive of USS Investment Management, said.
“His track-record as a strategic thinker, who has instituted change before, makes him ideally suited to supporting us in meeting our objectives.
“Having spent the last decade working for one of Australia’s largest pension funds, Innes brings with him a deep understanding of what it is to have the responsibility to pay the pensions that have been promised,” Pilcher said.
During his time with AustralianSuper, McKeand helpt to build an internal asset management team that now oversees around $57 billion in assets.
He also helped establish a machine learning strategy and shared the experience with [i3] Insights in this interview.
[i3] Insights is the official educational bulletin of the Investment Innovation Institute [i3]. It covers major trends and innovations in institutional investing, providing independent and thought-provoking content about pension funds, insurance companies and sovereign wealth funds across the globe.