IPOPIF Searching for Emerging Markets Debt Manager

The Illinois Police Officers’ Pension Investment Fund announced during its March 8 board meeting that it issued a request for proposal for a sole emerging markets debt manager to manage a $150 million allocation.  

The mandate would amount to 1.5% of the fund’s assets and would be the only manager in the funds EM debt strategy.  

The fund currently has a 6% allocation to EM debt through a passive debt strategy. However, it has a long-term target allocation of 3%, funds for which would come from the existing EM debt asset allocation. The fund plans for 1.5% of the total allocation to EM debt to be passive investments, while the other 1.5% would be actively managed by the successful candidate.  

“IPOPIF has a 3% long-term allocation to EMD but a 6% interim allocation.  The interim overweight serves as a placeholder for future investments in private markets,” says Kent Custer, IPOPIF CIO.  

“The interim structure will be 4.5% passive and 1.5% active.  The long-term structure will be 1.5% passive and 1.5% active.”  

Last September, IPOPIF announced an RFP for managers for active bank loan strategies. In February, the fund announced that it would allocate $150 million each to Aristotle Capital Management and Ares Capital Management to manage these investments.  

IPOPIF managed $10 billion in assets as of January 31, 2024. The fund manages the assets of 357 downstate Illinois police pension funds.  

Manager Requirements  

Prospects for the EM debt mandate will be evaluated by their experience, investment strategies, backgrounds of the firm’s staff, investment philosophy, investment performance, reasonableness of fees, and approaches to managing cybersecurity risks.  

Prospective managers are asked to upload documents to an IPOPIF database by March 22. The first stage of screening will begin on April 5, “high caliber” candidates would be asked for more information, which would be due on April 19. 

A second screening stage will occur on May 5. Semifinalist interviews will occur between June 17 and June 28, with board review, finalist interviews and manager selection occurring on September 13.  

Illinois Police Fund Announces Search for Active Bank Loan Strategy Managers 

Illinois Police Pension Seeks Active Manager for Small, Mid-Cap Stocks 

Illinois Nears Completion of Statewide Police Pension Consolidation 


Tags: debt strategy, emerging markets debt, Illinois Police Officers’ Pension Investment Fund, IPOPIF, Manager selection, RFP

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