UK - John Lewis Partnership Pensions Trust has appointed Pramerica Real Estate Investors to manage and expand its portfolio of UK property investments as part of plans to review its strategy.

The appointment also coincides with the pension fund's move from an IPD benchmark to an absolute return target.

John Lewis Partnership Pensions Trust's under management are expected to increase over time to a target amount of £270m with a greater focus on direct investments. The pension fund's assets existing real estate investments currently comprise £180m (€230m) of direct and indirect UK property assets.

Adrian Mitchell, pension investment manager of John Lewis Partnership Pensions Trust, said there was confidence that Pramerica would have the experience in the UK property investment market to maximise the value of the property portfolio while it increased the pension fund's real estate exposure.

In March this year, a number of UK pension schemes committed £44m (€52.6m) to a £285m ground lease fund launched by Pramerica.

Paul Dennis-Jones, head of Pramerica's UK fund management business, told IP Real Estate at the time that he expected more pension schemes - both corporate and local authority - to invest in the fund as a means of matching long-term liabilities.

"With bond yields where they are, we're having busy conversations with pension schemes and their advisers," he said.