Morgan Creek Digital now takes up round 1 p.c of the property of two Fairfax Retirement System pension funds – an funding which has greater than doubled since taking their first place within the fund that closed in February.
Two of the three pension funds below the system from Fairfax County, Virginia, the Police Officer’s Retirement System and Employees’ Retirement System, invested $55 million in Morgan Creek’s second fund in October.
The new allocation got here after seeing good preliminary outcomes from the primary fund, partly due to the efficiency of crypto, which makes up 15 p.c of the Morgan Creek’s investments; nearly all of the fund’s positions are in blockchain-related infrastructure firms.
“The final close for fund one was only in February of this year, and it is a short time frame admittedly,” Katherine Molnar, chief funding officer of the police officer’s fund, instructed CoinDesk.
“It’s gone well and part of that is because of Morgan Creek’s decision for how they’ve timed buying bitcoin. The liquid part of the fund has done quite well based on how they have timed ramping that up in the portfolio.”
The police officer’s pension fund contributed $22 million of the funding whereas the county staff’ fund put up $33 million. Molnar mentioned $50 million of the funding went to the second fund increase whereas $5 million was a separate co-investment in a particular undisclosed challenge below Morgan Creek.
Those figures characterize round 1.5 p.c of the police officer’s fund’s 2018 complete property and round 0.eight p.c of the county worker’s fund‘s complete property from the identical yr. For context, each pensions usually put up round 2 p.c of their property in a brand new funding.
This time round, convincing the board to re-up the funding was simpler than taking the preliminary stake.
“We didn’t have to do a lot of extra explanation or discussion, and people are generally pleased with the way the performance is off to a good start. It was a much easier legal process because the lawyers did a good job on the first contract.”
The Morgan Creek fund was characterised as a non-public fairness enterprise capital fund, and a alternative for a small capitalization US equities fund of their portfolio – one of many greater return and better danger elements of pension fund investing.
While the crypto a part of the Morgan Creek Digital fund is performing nicely, the pension fund’s CIOs expressed essentially the most curiosity within the blockchain facet of Morgan Creek, which makes up 85 p.c of the fund.
Andy Spellar, chief funding officer of the police officer’s fund, instructed CoinDesk:
“Think about every time you go to buy a property and refinance – you have to pay title insurance for someone to figure out if there’s a lien against your property. If the ownership of your property is digitized and transferred instantly, in the way that this is done in a day, title insurance goes away.”
As pension funds undergo from low rates of interest, know-how enterprise capital funds turn out to be extra enticing to funds making an attempt to fulfill their return targets, Spellar added.
“It’s a problem across the board for everybody,” Spellar mentioned. “The level of interest rates is a major component of your total return over time.”
Since all property are priced off of money, low money fee impacts the worth of each different asset class, Molnar added. This hasn’t but satisfied the 2 funds to spend money on purely crypto-focused funds, nonetheless.
“We’re not doing this for crypto exposure, but we do get some of that, and it does so far exhibit some uncorrelated behavior relative to other asset classes,” Spellar mentioned. “To be honest it’s so early in its lifecycle that I don’t have a good idea of whether that will hold up or not.”
Spellar, generally, sees any form of disruptive know-how as a hedge in opposition to conventional funding.
“We’re looking for disruptive innovation – anything that can be negatively correlated to other things we own,” Spellar mentioned. “So if we own a bunch of banks, this is a way to hedge against their monolithic and slow moving processes.”
Image by way of Fairfax County Virginia Police Department Facebook web page