The Florida State Board of Administration (SBA), the $126bn state pension fund, has appointed Trent Webster to lead its private equity investments unit.
Webster, who will serve as the fund’s senior investment officer for strategic investment and private equity, joined the SBA in 1997 and has worked in the international equities, domestic equities and strategic investments asset classes.
Since October 2008 he was a senior portfolio manager for the fund’s strategic investments unit, responsible for hedge fund due diligence, as well as constructing the corporate governance activist manager programme.
Webster was also responsible for conducting due diligence on commodity managers and the SBA’s first investment in a private equity management company. Prior to joining the SBA, he was a research analyst at Sprucegrove Investment Management.
“Trent has been a valuable resource in developing the SBA’s Strategic Investment Asset Class,” said Ash Williams, executive director and COO.
“We conducted a nationwide search for the best talent available in a very competitive industry and concluded the SBA is fortunate to already have among the best talent in the industry within its own ranks.”
In addition, John Bradley was promoted to the newly created position of director of private equity. Bradley joined SBA in 2000 and most recently held the position of portfolio manager, where he was responsible for the sourcing and monitoring of buy-out and venture capital investments in the private equity portfolio.
The SBA’s private equity investments currently represent around 4.6 per cent of its total portfolio. During fiscal year 2010/11, the internal rate of return from the asset class was 18.1 per cent.
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