OK Teachers’ OKs Aldus For PE Mandate

The $9 billion Teachers’ Retirement System of Oklahoma recently picked Aldus Equity Partners to handle a separate account discretionary mandate of $450 million to be invested in private equity.

In addition to Dallas-based Aldus, the pension fund’s board interviewed Grove Street Advisors and Partners Group at its April 2008 meeting. Aldus Equity is a boutique alternative investment management and advisory firm specializing in private equity. This is the first private equity mandate for the pension fund.

The decision was a long time in coming, with the plan sponsor having issued its RFP for the mandate in the fall of 2006 but not making a decision until May 2008.

The pension plan is the most seriously underfunded in the state, with an unfunded liability of $7.1 billion, according to a 2006 report by the Oklahoma Pension Oversight Committee. The limited partner has “the third-worst funded ratio of any public pension system in the nation,” according to a separate January 2007 report by the Community Action Project of Tulsa.

In other news, Tommy Beavers, executive secretary of the OK Teachers’, will retire at the end of the year. The search committee of the board of trustees has received resumes and is reviewing them, said Kim Bold, director of human resources.—N.G.