Wales Pension Partnership appoints Russell to build private debt portfolio

The deal builds on WPP’s existing relationship with Russell to create a diversified private credit portfolio that will meet long-term investment and ESG goals.

Wales Pension Partnership, a pooling entity representing eight local government pension schemes in Wales, has appointed Russell Investments to develop a private credit investment programme for its members.

The deal expands an existing relationship between WPP and Russell, which it named as an investment management solution provider in 2018. Its selection follows a competitive tender process run by bfinance and WPP’s host authority, Carmarthenshire County Council. Russell now manages more than £8 billion ($9.8 billion; €9.3 billion) of WPP pooled assets across equities, fixed income and private markets.

Russell will construct and manage a private credit portfolio for WPP with a focus on diversification across strategies, sectors, geographies and vintages. It will utilise primary and secondary investments in closed-end funds, as well as investing directly with a particular focus on sustainability to meet WPP’s ESG goals.

Russell will leverage its strategic partnership with private markets investor Hamilton Lane to build the portfolio on behalf of WPP.

Chris More, S151 officer at WPP, said: “As investment markets become more complex, we realise that private markets will continue to play a vital role in helping our constituent authorities meet their long-term goals.”