UK – The £2bn (€2.4bn) West Sussex Pension Fund is seeking a new manager to oversee its £184m property portfolio, potentially replacing long-serving manager Cushman & Wakefield Investors.

The local government pension scheme (LGPS) said the tender, which would see a manager take responsibility for both its direct and indirect property holdings, would function as a framework agreement, allowing other LGPS to appoint the selected manager.

It noted that its direct portfolio was valued at £147m, an increase on the £130m holding reported in its 2011-12 annual report.

The remaining £37.1m of the fund's property portfolio is held indirectly through fund investments.

According to the fund's most recent annual report, Cushman & Wakefield Investors has served as its property manager since 1980.

The 10-year management contract will also function as a framework agreement, with West Sussex noting that "a number of other public bodies [could] also wish to contract for the provision of the services".

The tender added: "The contract is also available to all administering bodies of the LGPS local government pension scheme. Therefore, the contract value could rise from £400,000 to £50m per annum should LGPS administering bodies wish to access the contract."

Several LGPS-wide tenders have recently been conducted, with the Norfolk Pension Fund recently leading several for consultancy and custodian services.

They have grown in popularity in the wake of Lord Hutton's report on public sector pensions, and the joint procurement and closer cooperation is viewed by some funds as an alternative to potential scheme mergers to cut costs.