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OMERS Pulls Capital Markets Team Out of New York

The powerful Canadian pension fund wants the staffers in Toronto.

The New York City-based capital markets unit of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System is gone, an informed source told Institutional Investor.

For a number of years, a small group of investors helped run OMERS’s public assets portfolio from the U.S. financial capital. They worked alongside a substantial private markets group at 450 Park Avenue in Midtown Manhattan. 

A spokesperson for the pension fund declined to comment on the departure of the group from New York.

Several months ago, OMERS informed the group that it would move their unit and positions to Toronto, the source said. Some, but not all, of the team members relocated.

Splitting the capital markets team between New York and Toronto — North American cities in the same time zone — may have been viewed as a suboptimal set-up, one source suggested. 

Capital markets global head Ken Miner took over in March 2018 and is based in Toronto, his LinkedIn profile shows

His division manages global equities, fixed income, and credit for OMERS, as well as partnerships with outside asset managers. Public assets amounted to C$46.4 billion (about $35 billion) of the organization’s C$97 billion investment portfolio at the end of last year, according to its 2018 annual report. 

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Whereas U.S. public pension funds typically outsource the majority of their assets to money managers, OMERS manages much of its fund internally. 

OMERS has about 3,100 staff members and 15 offices across Canada, the U.S., U.K., Germany, Netherlands, Singapore, and Australia, according to its website. The vast majority (2,780) of its employees are based in Canada.

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