The State of Wisconsin Investment Board and Citisoft Announce Successful Completion of Major Transformation Program

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SWIB wraps a multi-year technology initiative with the support of leading industry consultancy

This is one of the most transformative projects ever undertaken by a public pension fund and it’s incredibly rewarding to see a project of this scale come to fruition.

The State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB), a $104 billion government-owned pension fund based in Madison, has announced the successful completion of its four-year operations and technology transformation program with the support of Citisoft, a Boston-based investment management consulting firm.

The transformation program was part of SWIB’s 2014-2018 strategic plan to become an innovative, agile, integrated organization that optimizes investment returns while managing risk and cost over the long term. This initiative focused on delivering a state-of-the-art, integrated platform comprised of leading technologies, services, and streamlined processes that provide easy access to high quality and timely data. The successful completion of this program underscores SWIB’s commitment to a strong financial future for its beneficiaries.

The program launched in September 2013, with an assessment of SWIB’s systems and operations against its investment objectives to internalize asset management and expand multi-asset and risk-focused strategies. SWIB enlisted Citisoft’s expertise to develop their overall strategy and to execute the implementation of the transformation program. This effort led to the introduction of eight new technology solutions focused on enabling SWIB as an organization while providing staff with the tools and data needed to achieve its vision and mission. At the time of completion, this program is one of the pension industry’s largest technology and operations transformations to-date, involving a complete overhaul of the SWIB’s technical and operating environment.

“This initiative was driven by our commitment to derive the most value possible for SWIB’s retirees through our investment approach. With the completion of this program, we’ve achieved that goal by moving from siloed investment technology to a sophisticated asset class and risk aggregated model,” said David Villa, Chief Investment Officer at SWIB.

Touching all areas of SWIB’s business, the successful close of this program secures SWIB’s position at the forefront of investment management technology and operations innovation. SWIB has achieved an integrated platform serving portfolio and order management, with best of breed solutions for risk, analytics, and attribution in addition to a new finance and administration platform, new data management systems, a new data integration architecture, a new Investment Book of Record (IBOR), and new reporting and business intelligence capabilities. The overall architecture will enable SWIB to streamline operational processes through automation, scale its model, and focus on data quality.

“After four years of tireless effort on behalf of the members of the Wisconsin Retirement System, we’re proud to successfully complete this transformation effort. The completion of this massive undertaking was possible because of the hard work of SWIB staff in partnership of our colleagues at Citisoft,” SWIB Executive Director Michael Williamson said. “From strategy to implementation, Citisoft has been a partner at each step of the process.”

Citisoft assisted SWIB with the assessment of its legacy operation and challenges in 2013, led the development of the strategic technology and operating model, and developed the 4-year transformation roadmap and plan. They continued to assist SWIB in the selection and implementation of new systems and services, providing industry expertise, analysis, and project management. Throughout the course of the program, Citisoft also partnered in the oversight of the program management office and served in an advisory role to SWIB executive and senior management.

“This is one of the most transformative projects ever undertaken by a public pension fund and it’s incredibly rewarding to see a project of this scale come to fruition,” said David Bates, Managing Partner at Citisoft. “SWIB’s leadership team had the vision and commitment to implement a cutting edge system to support their investment strategy and we’re proud to have partnered with them in delivering this project on-time and under-budget.”

For more information about SWIB, visit http://www.swib.state.wi.us.

About Citisoft

Citisoft is a global consulting firm dedicated to servicing the investment management industry. Our staff and management bring credibility and hands-on knowledge to every facet of our client relationships, backed by a history of successful partnerships with leading investment management firms and industry service providers. With our deep understanding of all aspects of the investment management process, our clients benefit from our ability to identify industry trends and accurately assess their effects. Through our Advisory and Delivery services, we offer a full complement of consulting capabilities ranging from strategy formation through guiding and implementing successful business change.

About SWIB

SWIB manages over $110 billion in assets, a majority of which includes the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS), the 9th largest U.S. public pension fund and 25th largest pension fund in the world. Providing a strong, steady economic pillar for the people – and the state – it serves, SWIB’s forward thinking culture has helped the agency fuel one of the best-funded pension funds in the U.S., protecting and growing the assets over 620,000 current and former state and local government employees and their families count on for a more confident financial future.

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Alissa Doherty
Citisoft
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