San Francisco pension hires private markets chief

The $16bn pension system has hired Art Wang, the private equity chief from the New York State Common Retirement Fund, to oversee real estate, private equity and real assets.

The San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System (SFERS) has found itself a new head of private markets. The $16 billion pension system has hired Art Wang, the former head of private equity at the New York State Common Retirement Fund. Wang oversaw a $15 billion global private equity portfolio for New York State.

Wang, whose last day at New York Common was January 16, has taken the title of managing director, private markets, with the San Francisco system. He will lead investments in real estate, private equity and real assets, according to a statement from SFERS.

Wang joined New York Common in 2010. Prior to New York Common, Wang worked as executive director and head of US private equity for CDIB Capital, the overseas investment arm of China Development Financial Holdings. Before that, Wang worked as a principal with Pacific Venture Partners.

San Francisco decided last spring to increase its allocation to real estate and put an added focus on opportunistic and value-added strategies. Indeed, SFERS approved a plan to allocate as much as $400 million to non-core managers for its 2013 fiscal year. The pension plan promoted Lindsey Adams to head of real estate in January 2012. Adams now reports directly to Wang. 

additional reporting by James Comtois