Policy in practice: pension fund reform

15 April 2024

In this episode of policy in practice, David Gauke, Christopher Good and Margarida Ferreira consider what the pension fund reform means for the private capital industry.

Together they discuss:

  • private funds and what might happen in the future, possibly after a change in government;
  • France’s Tibi programme;
  • the idea of a potential national wealth fund; and
  • the practical impacts on funds and fundraising.

For more information on this topic, read their in-depth article on "Pension fund reform".

Episode summary

In this episode of the "Policy in Practice" podcast, David Gauke, head of public policy at Macfarlanes, hosts a discussion focusing on the potential impacts of government policy changes on private funds, especially after a possible change in government. Joined by Chris Good, a partner in the Funds group, and Margarida Ferreira, an investor intelligence manager, they explore how government policy might direct more pension fund assets into high productivity investments. They discuss the cross-party consensus on channeling pension funds into high-risk, high-return investments and the implications of such policies, including the Chancellor and Shadow Chancellor's plans to enhance investment in productive assets.

The conversation shifts to international examples, particularly the French “Tibi” scheme initiated in 2019, aimed at boosting investment in French tech startups through institutional investors like insurance companies. Margarida provides an analysis of the scheme, noting its focus on financing French managers over startups directly, with investment mandates that can be French, European, or global. This segment explores the balance between domestic economic growth and attracting global capital, highlighting the need for similar schemes in the UK to consider broader economic impacts and investment strategies.

Towards the end of the discussion, the focus turns to the practicalities of implementing such investment strategies in the UK, considering the regulatory and operational complexities that might arise. They debate the role of pension funds in supporting the British economy versus achieving high returns for pensioners. The implications for fund managers, who might need to adapt to new government-led incentives that encourage investments in specific regions or sectors, are also discussed. This includes potential changes in fee structures, investment strategies, and the overall management of pension fund assets in light of public policy shifts.

If you would like a full written transcript of this podcast, please get in touch.