CalPERS in talks with BlackRock to outsource buyout business, source says

Ken James | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Signage outside the offices of the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (Calpers) in Sacramento, California, U.S., on Sept. 13, 2010.

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) is in talks to outsource its private equity business to BlackRock, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The largest U.S. pension fund’s discussions with BlackRock about managing some or all of its private equity investments are at a preliminary stage and may not result in a deal, the person added.

“No decisions have been made. We are still looking at models to bring back to the board,” a spokeswoman for CalPERS said.

BlackRock declined to comment.

Private equity has been CalPERS’ best-performing asset class in the past two decades and accounts for about $26 billion of its portfolio. But CalPERS mainly invests in private equity funds and has been criticized for accepting the high fees and limited disclosures typically associated with the asset class.

Bloomberg reported CalPERS’s discussions with New York-based BlackRock earlier on Thursday.

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