The $560 million Health Industry Plan (HIP) has doubled its commitment to private equity by awarding mandates to managers targeting illiquid secondaries.

The fund has assigned $40 million collectively to US firm HarbourVest and Swiss alternatives outfit Partners Group, to acquire assets offered through private equity secondaries markets. The rationale for targeting the secondaries sector was that many owners of sound unlisted assets are under pressure to sell holdings to release some liquidity or, as some rich family-oriented European businesses enter succession phases, there are instances where young inheritors of these businesses are willing to sell some or all of their stakes, Ross Bernays, HIP chief executive officer, said. The mandates provide a significant boost to HIP’s private equity exposure: “in total commitments, they double it,” Bernays said. The fund for workers in the health and associated industries also recently appointed Craig Farr as its compliance officer from Sydney law firm De Grants. Farr’s previous tenures were at Colonial First State, Tower and Schroders, Bernays said.

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