OPERS seeks audit consultant

Ohio’s $76 billion pension system wants to hire a consultant to assist in the auditing and ranking of its private equity and real estate portfolios.

The $76 billion Ohio Public Employees Retirement System is searching for a consultant to help the pension system audit its private equity and real estate portfolios for due diligence and portfolio monitoring procedures.

OPERS issued an RFP for a consultant to help benchmark existing and ongoing due diligence procedures and to monitor the efforts of its external managers, according to pension documents. The mandate includes the pension’s private equity and real estate portfolios.

The selected consultant also will be charged with developing an external manager risk matrix for implementation by internal audit staff. This matrix would be scored to individually rank all existing managers. Internal audit staff would regularly update and use the matrix for the purposes of identifying potential manager candidates for review consideration, according to pension documents.

An increase in reporting, monitoring, risk and due diligence requirements has led pensions to seek outside help or expand their internal staffs.

Earlier this month, the $15 billion San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System announced plans to hire a senior private equity portfolio manager to assist with growing due diligence duties. Reporting to the deputy division manager of private markets, the candidate will be responsible for providing administration and due diligence support to two investment analysts.