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Head of mandates departs Mexico’s biggest pension fund

Head of mandates departs Mexico’s biggest pension fund

Hector Silva, the head of mandates at Afore XXI Banorte, has left the Mexican pension fund to pursue new opportunities outside of the institutional world, Citywire Americas has learned.

Silva had been with the $36.6 billion Afore, Mexico’s largest pension fund, since June 2015 and is leaving to start an MBA at Columbia University in New York City.

Among Silva and his former team’s main duties was to research and award investment mandates to international asset managers. Speaking to Citywire Americas, XXI Banorte’s CIO Sergio Mendez said they had reshuffled the team to prepare for Silva’s anticipated departure.

‘It’s a process for us but there’s no key man risk in our group. We are sad to see him go and we wish him all the best,’ said Mendez.

Silva’s responsibilities have been distributed among the remaining members of XXI Banorte’s asset allocation and mandate unit, including Leonardo Villa, who oversees the team, Carlos Barrios and America Hernandez.

Mendez added they have no plans to hire any replacement for Silva but said they are always looking for strong recruits to bolster their investment capabilities.

Mandate progress

The pension fund is in the final selection stage for its soon to be launched US equity mandate, Mendez said. The CIO added they will be announcing which asset managers have been awarded the mandate, whose size has yet to be revealed, in the coming weeks.

It is also working on getting approval from the Mexican pension regulator Consar to fund its commodity mandate. First announced in early 2014, the pension fund is working with the regulator to sort out issues regarding the use of derivatives.

Afore XXI Banorte currently has two mandates in operation, a European equity mandate worth $1.2 billion run by BlackRock and Schroders and an $850 million Asian equity one managed by Pioneer Investments, JP Morgan Asset Management, Investec Asset Management and BlackRock.

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