CalPERS moves closer to selecting private equity consultant

The $165bn pension, the largest in the US, has narrowed its candidate list for private equity consultant to four – Aldus Equity, Ennis Knupp, Brock Capital and Pension Consulting Alliance. The pension’s staff will choose two of the four firms to move into the final phase of the selection process.

California Public Employees’ Retirement System’s investment staff has approved four candidates vying to serve as its private equity consultant – Aldus Equity, Brock Capital Group, Ennis, Knupp & Associates and Pension Consulting Alliance.

Staff at the $165 billion pension were charged Monday with choosing two of the four firms to move on to the final round of the selection process, which will consist of interviews with the pension’s investment committee at a meeting 11 May.

CalPERS began searching for a private equity consultant in September. The selected firm will offer strategy and policy analysis, investment analysis and research and performance analysis and monitoring. CalPERS is looking to award a three-year contract to the winning firm.

The pension’s budget has an allocation of $300,000 to $600,000 annually for the private equity consultant, according to a CalPERS document.

Aldus, one of the four finalists, has hit some road bumps recently with its public pension clients.

Aldus is caught up in the New York State Common Retirement System kick-back scandal. The New Mexico State Investment Council recently suspended Aldus as its private equity advisor as its reviews the Texas-based firm’s performance with the endowment since it was hired in 2004.

Aldus, though not accused of any wrongdoing, allegedly paid sham fees for investments from the $122 billion pension. Henry Morris, a former political official with ex-New York State Comptroller Alan Hevesi, and David Loglisci, former chief investment officer with the pension, have been indicted as part of the scheme, along with two other people.