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Innovation in DC

Unlocking pre and post-retirement options to maximise pension income

London |
Speakers include:
Matthew Webb

Matthew Webb

Thomson Reuters

Rene Poisson

Rene Poisson

J.P. Morgan UK Pension Plan

Paul Herbert

Paul Herbert

Willis Towers Watson


Pensions Expert, in association with J.P. Morgan Asset Management, will bring together senior pension professionals for an exclusive half day forum focused on unlocking pre and post-retirement options to maximise pension income.

fallback Add to my Calendar 06/08/2017 09:00:0006/08/2017 13:00:00trueInnovation in DCPensions Expert, in association with J.P. Morgan Asset Management, will bring together senior pension professionals for an exclusive half day forum focused on unlocking pre and post-retirement options to maximise pension income.Innovation-in-DC1437ca6d367ca7e21320e997e40d4cdcMM/DD/YYYY


“The best guide for understanding the world’s economic and monetary issues.”

Alan K. Gander, Lend Lease Ltd


Full Overview

The introduction of ‘freedom and choice’ has transformed the DC pension environment. Schemes are adapting and innovating, and planning effective post-retirement options to meet the changing needs of members.

With global markets always uncertain one attractive source of diversification and uncorrelated returns is the universe of alternatives.  Are DC schemes ready for this potentially beneficial asset class and how can they and their investment managers effectively manage operational issues, as well as scalability, liquidity, flexibility and valuation?

Beyond retirement DC schemes are seeking out innovative solutions to provide members with effective ways of managing their pension savings.  What do members want and need?  How important is scheme design and asset mix in addressing the risks vs. rewards of income drawdown? How is the post-retirement market likely to develop in the medium to long-term?


Agenda - 8th Jun

  • 9:00am
    Registration and Networking
  • 9:30am
    Opening Remarks

    Pádraig Floyd. Financial Journalist

  • 9:40am
    Taking the alternative route

    As DC plans consider greater exposure to alternative assets, what can they learn from the experiences of DB schemes who have long invested in this fast evolving asset class?  How have alternatives performed in recent years relative to more mainstream allocations, and how has the umbrella of alternative assets and strategies expanded to meet investor demand?  As DC plans seek out enhanced returns and greater diversification, what knowledge can they take from the past to effectively embed alternatives in their portfolios?

    Paul Herbert, Senior Investment Consultant, Towers Watson

  • 10:05am
    Panel: How DC plans can access the world of alternatives

    As uncertain returns in traditional asset classes continues, DC plans are looking towards alternatives to provide uncorrelated returns and better retirement outcomes.  This panel will discuss how to embed alternatives into DC plans and default funds, discussing which approaches offer the best way to access infrastructure, property, private equity and hedge funds.  Speakers will further explore how schemes are meeting the challenges of scalability, liquidity, flexibility and valuation needs. 

    Craig Brown, Institutional Distribution Director, Mobius Life

    Peter Hobbs, Managing Director, Private Markets, bfinance

    Declan Canavan, Managing Director, Head of Alternative Investment Strategies, EMEA, J.P. Morgan Asset Management

    Moderator: Pádraig Floyd. Financial Journalist

  • 10:50am
    Morning break
  • 11:10am
    Pension drawdown – using Big Data to get it right for members

    Understanding pension scheme members is now more critical than ever, as plans move to redesign default funds, especially for drawdown.  In this session hear what role Big Data can have in highlighting flawed assumptions around investor saving and spending behaviour, and how this can inform plan sponsor decision making as well as product design for default products in accumulation and drawdown.

    Anne Lester, Managing Director, Head of Retirement Solutions, Global Investment Management Solutions, J.P. Morgan Asset Management

  • 11:35am
    Panel: Post-retirement options – delivering what members want and need

    Making pension savings work in retirement is a top priority for DC schemes and their members. This session will explore how the post-retirement landscape is evolving, analysing the drawdown options and how they fit the income needs of pensioners. How can savers best use a blend of annuities and drawdown to create flexibility?

    Rene Poisson, Chairman, J.P. Morgan UK Pension Plan

    Matthew Webb, VP Benefits, Thomson Reuters

    Sonia Kataora, Associate, Barnett Waddingham

    John Lawson, Head of Financial Research, Aviva UK & Ireland Life

    Moderator: Angus Peters, Reporter, Pensions Expert

  • 12:20pm
    Closing remarks
  • 12:30pm
    Networking lunch

Speakers (9)

Matthew Webb

Matthew Webb

VP Benefits
Thomson Reuters

Matthew Webb is VP Benefits at Thomson Reuters covering EMEA and APAC countries. Maximising the value of benefits to both the employer and employee is his enduring focus whilst providing engaging plans and programs for protection, wealth accumulation and lifestyle choice.  As part of the global reward function, benefits will increasingly become part of a total reward strategy.  Mr Webb’s previous roles have spanned the airline, oil and financial industries with both UK and international remits. He is an Associate of the Pensions Management Institute and holds the Diploma in International Employee Benefits.

Rene Poisson

Rene Poisson

J.P. Morgan UK Pension Plan

Rene Poisson is an Independent Director of the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) and Chair of the Remuneration Committee, Chair of the J.P. Morgan UK Pension Plan, Chair of the Standard Life Independent Governance Committee, Director of the Standard Life Master Trust and, Chair of the Advisory Committees of Five Arrows Credit Solutions and Five Arrows Direct Lending.  He retired in 2012 after a 30 year career with J.P. Morgan.

Paul Herbert

Paul Herbert

Senior Investment Consultant
Willis Towers Watson

Paul Herbert leads the DC investment group at Willis Towers Watson. He specialises in DC schemes where he advises on all aspects of investment including investment strategy; selection and monitoring of fund managers and providers; as well as transitions.  Mr Herbert has 20 years' of investment and consulting experience, joining Willis Towers Watson in 2009.

Anne Lester

Anne Lester

Managing Director, Head of Retirement Solutions, Global Investment Management Solutions
J.P. Morgan Asset Management

Anne Lester, Managing Director, is a portfolio manager and Head of Retirement Solutions for J.P. Morgan Asset Management’s Global Investment Management Solutions. She is a seasoned asset allocation specialist who has been responsible for the development of the firm’s defined contribution asset allocation strategies including the JPMorgan SmartRetirement target date funds and the firm’s Dynamic Withdrawal strategy. Prior to joining the Multi-Asset Solutions team in 2000, Ms Lester worked as a fixed income and currency trader and portfolio manager in the firm’s Milan office. Before beginning her career with J.P. Morgan, she was a Fulbright Scholar in 1990, spending more than a year in Tokyo working for a member of the Japanese Parliament. Previously, she worked for the U.S. Senate Government Affairs Committee. Ms Lester holds an MA in International Economics and Japan Studies from Johns Hopkins University’s School for Advanced International Studies, and an AB in Politics from Princeton University.

Peter Hobbs

Peter Hobbs

Managing Director, Private Markets

Peter Hobbs is Managing Director of the Private Markets team at bfinance. With 30 years of real asset class experience, he is a leading expert in the private asset classes, covering all stages of the investment process. Mr Hobbs has particular expertise in the Infrastructure asset class having been part of the leadership team behind RREEF’s infrastructure initiatives including the launch of their Pan-European Infrastructure fund (PEIF) in 2006. He joined bfinance following five years as Managing Director at MSCI, six years as Managing Director at RREEF/Deutsche Asset Management, six years in Boston-based PPR, and a number of other roles in the real asset classes.  In 2015 he was shortlisted for Outstanding Industry Contribution at the IPE Real Estate Global Awards, and is a frequent contributor to industry events. Mr Hobbs holds a PhD from the University of Reading and is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (MIRCS).

Declan Canavan

Declan Canavan

Managing Director, Client Portfolio Manager for Alternatives EMEA
J.P. Morgan Asset Management

Declan Canavan, Managing Director, is Client Portfolio Manager for Alternatives EMEA, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, having joined the team in 2014.  Previously he worked in J.P. Morgan’s Investment Bank in New York and London in senior roles in the hedge funds, financing and structured credit businesses. Prior to returning to J.P. Morgan Mr Canavan worked for Barclays Capital as a Managing Director in the Alternative Investment team in London.

Craig Brown

Craig Brown

Institutional Distribution Director
Mobius Life

Craig Brown is Institutional Distribution Director at Mobius Life with responsibility for driving further growth in institutional client relationships and assets under management. He has over 30 years’ industry experience as a consultant and relationship manager.  Previously he was Head of Global Consultant Relations at Legal and General Investment Management where he was responsible for developing LGIM's relationships with the leading global consultant firms.  Prior to LGIM Mr Brown was Head of Consultant Relationships at HSBC Investments and before that was a Client Director at Deutsche Asset Management, and a Senior Consultant at Mercer Investment Consulting

John Lawson

John Lawson

Head of Financial Research
Aviva UK & Ireland Life

John Lawson is Head of Financial Research at Aviva UK & Ireland Life, and a management team member of Aviva’s platform business. His role includes speaking with the UK government on policy issues, both on behalf of Aviva and as a representative of the UK insurance industry. He also contributes to the development of market strategy in accumulation and retirement markets. Mr Lawson has wide experience of the pensions industry and is a frequent commentator on pension issues in the press. He was named Corporate Adviser Personality of the Year for 2014.

Sonia Kataora

Sonia Kataora

Barnett Waddingham

Sonia Kataora is an Associate within Barnett Waddingham’s Investment Consulting practice.  She specialises in providing advice on all aspects of pension scheme investment, including investment strategy reviews, investment manager selection and performance monitoring. Ms Kataora is heavily involved in conducting DC investment strategy research and development within Barnett Waddingham, aimed at improving standards of DC governance, encouraging member engagement and designing robust investment solutions seeking to maximise member outcomes at retirement. Her role often sees her give training sessions to new and experienced trustees and company representatives on investment strategy issues.  Ms Kataora’s current DC appointments involve providing investment support to a portfolio of master trust clients and a number of standalone schemes with assets of varying sizes.


Chair & Moderator (2)

Pádraig  Floyd

Pádraig Floyd

Money Journey Media

Pádraig Floyd is an award-winning financial journalist who writes on personal finance subjects, particularly pensions, investments and workplace savings. A regular commentator on pensions and investment issues, Mr Floyd shares views via Twitter at @gogetemfloyd, his website and his Linkedin profile at He was a member-nominated trustee director of the Pearson Group Pension Plan and is a former committee member of the Association of Member-Nominated Trustees. 

Angus Peters

Angus Peters

Pensions Expert

Angus Peters has reported on a wide variety of issues affecting DB and DC schemes since joining Pensions Expert in June 2016. Having been introduced to the world of pensions and investment as an intern at Pensions Expert and MandateWire, he went on to work as a reporter at The Sun Online before returning to the FT.

Who attends?

Attendance is complimentary* for pension scheme investment decision makers including:

  • Scheme Managers
  • Heads of Pensions
  • Trustees
  • Pension Scheme Board Members
  • Independent trustees and consultants

*Places are strictly limited and subject to approval by the Publisher.


2017 Photos

View photos from the event here.

Innovation in DC



Financial Times Headquarters, One Southwark Bridge
One Southwark Bridge
London SE1 9HL

United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7775 6653


Presented by (1)

Pensions Expert is the Financial Times' specialist title for UK workplace pension schemes. It is the authoritative source of information on how these schemes and their sponsoring employers are working together to provide their members with an adequate retirement income.

Our case studies, news analysis and informed comment provide trustees, management teams and their providers with timely, practical information to inform their day-to-day jobs.

In association with (1)

J.P. Morgan is a global leader in investment management, dedicated to creating a strategic advantage for institutions by connecting clients with J.P. Morgan investment professionals globally. The firm seeks to deliver first-class investment results to some of the world’s most sophisticated organizations, including corporate pension plans, endowments, foundations, insurance companies, sovereign wealth funds and government-affiliated institutions.

J.P. Morgan is distinguished by its capital markets knowledge, global investment expertise and the long-term, proactive partnerships it establishes with clients. Our investment strategies span equity, fixed income, real estate, private equity, hedge funds, infrastructure and asset allocation.


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