GPIF recruits London-based PE advisor

Coller Capital’s Hiromichi Mizuno has joined the $1.3tr Japanese pension fund’s investment committee

The world’s largest pension fund, the Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF), has appointed a London-based private equity professional to its investment committee, as the $1.3 trillion institution gears up to invest more in alternative assets, including private equity.

Hiromichi Mizuno, partner at secondaries firm Coller Capital, has been appointed for a two-year term, replacing out-going Kimikazu Nomi, according to media reports.

GPIF did not respond to requests for comment and Coller was unavailable for comment by press time.

Mizuno will reportedly remain in his role at Coller and is unique to the investment committee which mainly comprises economists and academics.

The move comes as GPIF activates its alternative investment unit, considering a target allocation of between 5 and 10 percent of its total assets, Private Equity International reported earlier.

“After infrastructure, we are now focusing on private equity and real estate,” Tokihiko Shimizu, director-general of GPIF’s research department, told PEI in an earlier interview.

“Currently we are in talks with institutional investors about joint investments in private equity. [An investment] will come some time in the next 12 months,” he explained, adding that GPIF’s main priority will be to achieve diversification across geographies, sectors and scale.

“Our important task now is to construct a private equity strategy in light of these broad aspects. Given our fund size, investing in a fund of funds does not make sense. The efficient way is to invest through a separate account arrangement. We have meetings with many gatekeepers, but it won’t be only one we choose. We’ll hire several.”