Institutional Investors

Merchant Navy test drives new model with Towers Watson at the helm


In a novel twist where one consultant oversees another consultant, risk falls and returns rise as Navy pension fund sails into hedge funds

By Claire Makin

Pieter Steyn
Andrew Waring
Andrew Waring became chief executive of the $5.5 billion Merchant Navy Officers’ Pension Fund (MNOPF) in March 2008 and quickly realised that its governance structure needed a fairly urgent overhaul. “It was not clear who was taking responsibility for investment decisions,” Waring says.

This was not ideal at a time when the sound of crashing markets could be heard around the world. So in October 2008 the UK-based MNOPF delegated the chief investment officer function to its longstanding consultant, Towers Watson.

Two years later, Towers