WRS News Online

SWIB Wins Pair of Allocators' Choice Awards

The State of Wisconsin Investment Board has received two Institutional Investor Allocators' Choice Awards. In a recent ceremony SWIB took home top honors in the Technology User of the Year and Team of the Year categories. SWIB was among three finalists for Technology User of the Year and one of seven finalists for Team of the Year.

The recognition for Technology User of the Year is based on SWIB delivering on time and on budget its three-and-a-half year, $48 million technology overhaul. The new technology provides staff with easily accessible, high quality and timely data. The technology upgrade is part of SWIB's efforts to implement its investment strategy, manage risk and optimize costs. SWIB's investment strategy is designed to first help protect the Wisconsin Retirement System from another downturn and then to earn reasonable returns.

Managing more assets internally allows SWIB to better manage risk and to optimize costs by reducing reliance on external money managers. Since 2007, SWIB moved from investing just 21% of assets in-house to approximately 64% today. SWIB's greater reliance on internal management saves $72 million per year, compared to what similar funds would pay to manage the same assets.

The nomination for Team of the Year recognized that SWIB is home to top talent in American public fund investing. To manage more funds internally, SWIB has assembled a team of highly qualified professionals throughout the organization that work to help fuel one of the best-funded public pension funds in the U.S.

The Allocators' Choice Awards are new financial awards given by Institutional Investor — a leading international financial publication to recognize industry leaders. The awards were created as a way for asset allocators to choose peers deserving recognition for their work in different categories. Finalists were selected based on nominations submitted over the summer and were vetted by the publications editorial team.