Northern Trust wins CERN Pension Fund mandate from State Street

CERN Pension Fund CEO cites technology and value as reasons for review which will it move $4.25 billion of assets to Northern Trust for custody.

By Jonathan Watkins

The CERN Pension Fund will move its $4.25 billion of assets to Northern Trust for custody services, following a tender process which will see it switch from existing provider State Street.

The change marks the end of a 25-year custody deal between CERN, known as the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, and State Street.

Speaking to Global Custodian, Matthew Eyton-Jones, chief executive officer of the CERN Pension Fund, said “technology” and “value for money” were key reasons for the review, which forms part of the fund’s standard procurement policies.

He described the process as an extensive review and said the fund wanted to make sure they were using “the best available custody technology in the marketplace”.

Northern Trust in London will take over custody of the assets in August.

The custodian has had a successful 12 months for pension fund mandate wins, headlined by Northern Pool, a £46 billion pension fund group and the retirement plan of The Boeing Company.

Northern Trust’s technology developments have been vast over the same period including partnering with new providers on fund services offerings and developing its own blockchain services, including an initiative in the private equity market.

CERN is home to groups of physicists and engineers probing the fundamental structure of the universe, and is known for its purpose-built particle accelerators and detectors.

Founded in 1954, the CERN laboratory sits astride the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva.