SEI has maintained a 15-year relationship with a U.S. corporate defined benefit plan (the Plan) with $9 billion in assets under administration (approximately £6.3 billion). The Plan previously outsourced all back office operations, portfolio advice and manager selection, but made the decision to move manager selection in-house to its internal investment office.

In doing so, the Plan required a partner who could bring both back office expertise and capabilities to produce custom reporting to inform front office decision making. This case study demonstrates how the Plan utilises SEI’s unique capabilities, which are now part of our Enhanced CIO solution.

Challenge: Finding the right strategic partner to provide expertise in an evolving investment environment

The plan had been using a third party to perform back office operations, provide portfolio advice and perform manager selection, but decided to re-evaluate their vendor relationships. The Board wanted to make a change to move the manager selection and due diligence process to their existing investment professionals in the internal investment office in order to streamline their manager relationships.  However, they did not want to expand the office to take on any of the investment processing and support tasks.

They needed a new strategic partner to perform the back office functions and cash management operations. It was important that the new partner could provide both back office scale and expertise to allow the investment office to focus on governance over investment decisions. Crucially, the Board needed a partner who could also produce custom reporting to empower the investment team.

Solution: Customised reporting, comprehensive analytics and a direct feed to the custodian

SEI’s ECIO solution provides a customised process for quarterly reporting and analytics to support the investment office in their back office operations. We built the performance reporting specifically to meet the needs of the Plan and provide in-depth information regarding performance on a quarterly basis.

Because of the comprehensive services and the expertise of our Privacy Equity operations teams, we were able to work with the Plan’s custodian to establish a data feed process so the custodian can reconcile private equity positions to SEI. Rather than adding full time staff, the investment office collaborates with our team to update processes as the needs of the Plan change. The Board and investment office can use an internet-based dashboard to run reporting, including robust customised reports, or reach out to our team as an extension of their own investment staff.

Solution Enhanced Chief Investment Officer (Enhanced CIO) Solutions for Institutional Investment Offices Power up your internal investment program

SEI Service Overview

  • Investment processing
  • Treasury cash management
  • Workflow and document management
  • Portfolio company reporting
  • Quarterly performance reporting and analytics

Conclusion: A partner who acts as part of the team

The internal investment office is able to focus on the governance process without having to add additional staff. By working directly with managers, the Plan has streamlined its manager due diligence and selection. At the same time, they’ve enlisted a strategic partner to manage back office operations with the ability to quickly adapt its solution to the Plan’s changing needs.

If you would like to discuss your organisation's specific challenges or find out more about our solutions for investment offices, contact Kris Shergold for an introductory meeting. 

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This case study describes the attributes of a specific client that SEI has determined is comparable based on objective criteria, including organisational goals, asset size, and required services. Any discussion of specific services is intended to help clients understand SEI’s customised approach to providing outsourced investment management services. The information expressed herein represents the current, good faith views of SEI at the time of original publication, and has not been updated.

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