Mizuho in PE strategy for Japanese pensions

10 February 2014   Category: News, Asia, Global, USA, Europe   By Maya Ando

Mizuho Trust Bank and Mizuho Financial Group have started providing private equity services to local pension funds in cooperation with the Partner Group, a Switzerland-based private equity fund. The collaboration reflects the growing opportunities in the market. The world’s largest pension fund, the Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) has indicated that it plans to increase allocations to alternative asset classes to boost long-term returns.

The agreement between Mizuho and the Swiss firm was pencilled in last month. In a press release, the Partner Group said that the reason for choosing Mizuho was its solid track record of investments and its global reach along with its established multi-asset class platform in private markets. Meanwhile, the Partner Group has been actively raising funds from local limited partners. In 2011, the fund headhunted Mamoru Numata, a former manager of alternative investments and new business development at Sony Life to lead the local team.

Both parties will jointly develop and distribute certain global private equity and infrastructure products in the pension market in Japan. Through the alliance, Mizuho will enlarge its asset management business by adding new asset classes.

Under the terms of the agreement, MFG and Mizuho Trust will have select distribution rights for Partners Group’s integrated global private equity and infrastructure funds. Additionally, Mizuho Trust and Partners Group will explore opportunities for further collaboration and potential product development, in order to better meet the increasing demand from Japan’s institutional investors for access to global private market investments, according to Mizuho Financial Group.