Daniel Booth named as CalPERS new deputy chief investment boss for private markets
CalPERS has appointed Daniel Booth as its new deputy chief investment officer for private markets, the Californian pension giant said in a statement shared with Net Zero Investor.
The newly created position is responsible for all private market investment strategies, including asset allocation.
Booth will work closely with chief investment officer Nicole Mussico, and the CalPERS Investment Office’s managing investment directors to lead investment decision-making in the Private Equity, Real Assets, and Private Debt asset classes.
Musicco called Booth "a visionary investor who’s consistently been able to identify key market trends and has delivered top-tier results."
She added that "his strategic thinking and thought leadership, which have contributed to his global success, is what we need to ensure the long-term sustainability of our fund.”
Booth will begin at CalPERS in April and will report directly to Musicco.
UK Infrastructure Bank
Booth has approximately 25 years of investment experience and joins CalPERS from the United Kingdom Infrastructure Bank in Leeds, UK, where he serves as a senior advisor helping set-up the investment and equity investment platforms.
In this capacity, he helped to formulate investment strategies to support the British government’s net zero agenda, focusing on higher risk transactions in evolving infrastructure sectors including clean energy projects.
Booth previously served as CIO and set up the investment activities for Border to Coast Pension Partnership, a centralized asset manager for 11 UK underlying local government pension schemes, and the largest UK public pension plan.
Prior to this, he worked as CIO of Portfolio Management and Head of Alternatives for Saudi Aramco in Saudi Arabia, and as an Alternatives Investment Director for Prime Capital and FERI in Germany.
“I am honoured with the opportunity to work at CalPERS and I look forward to working closely with Nicole and the investment team to help build retirement security for California’s public employees,” said Booth.
He has a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Business Economics from Southampton University. Booth is also a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) member.
Focus on private markets
Private markets continue to provide a means of inflation protection and diversification for the fund, as well as the excess returns CalPERS needs to meet its pension obligations, according to the released statement.
Private Equity is the highest performing asset class in the CalPERS portfolio with a return of 13% over a 5-year period and 12.8% return over a 10-year period.
The CalPERS board also increased the strategic asset allocation for private equity from 8% to 13% starting with the 2022-23 fiscal year.
In total, CalPERS has allocated 1/3 of its portfolio to private assets based on the policy asset allocation that went into effect in July 2022.