Investment Managers

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Overview

The Treasurer’s Office utilizes external investment managers to help support several investment programs under the Treasurer’s purview, including: (1) 529 College Savings Program, (2) Technology Development Accounts, (3) Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Program, (4) Secure Choice Retirement Savings Program, and (5) State Investments.

 
529 College Savings Program

The Illinois State Treasurer is the trustee of Illinois’ two 529 College Savings Plans, Bright Start and Bright Directions.  Together these programs represent approximately $10 billion in assets. 

 

The two plans are “qualified tuition programs” under Section 529 of the Internal Revenue Code.  As such, investments grow tax-free as long as withdrawals are used to pay for higher education expenses (e.g., tuition, fees, books, room and board).

 

Bright Start and Bright Directions offers three categories of investment portfolios to meet participants’ needs, risk tolerance, and investing styles.  Investment options include:  Age-Based, Target, and Individual Fund Portfolios.  Each portfolio invests in l funds across all traditional asset classes, including cash and cash equivalents, fixed income, public equities, and real estate.

 

Investment Consultants:  Wilshire Associates, Marquette Associates

 

Eligibility:  Prospective investment managers must be managed by one of the following entities:

 

          • Registered Investment Advisor

          • Registered Investment Company

 

The Treasurer’s Office will only consider – with the exception of sub-advisory firms owned by minorities, women, veterans, or persons with a disability – registered investment companies that offer pooled investment vehicles that comply with the Investment Act of 1940 for externally managed programs, including the following pooled investment vehicles:

 

          • Mutual Funds

          • Index Funds

          • Exchange-Traded Funds

 

Technology Development Accounts

The Treasurer's Office manages the state’s $300 million investment allocation to Technology Development Accounts.  These accounts provide capital to technology (including, but not limited to consumer products, logistics, manufacturing, energy, agricultural, and other related fields) venture and growth equity funds in Illinois that finance technology businesses seeking to locate, expand, or remain in Illinois.

 

The first Technology Development Account (TDA I) launched in 2005, committing over $73 million across 18 funds.  The second Technology Development Account (TDA II or the “Illinois Growth and Innovation Fund” or “ILGIF”) launched in 2016 with a commitment of $222 million.  Prospective funds are still being evaluated and considered for capital commitments under ILGIF.

 

Investment Consultants:  50 South Capital Advisors, Marquette Associates

 

Eligibility:  ILGIF eligibility requirements are detailed at www.ILGIF.com (scroll down to “Requirements”).

 

Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Program

The Illinois ABLE program is a tax-advantaged investment program that provides persons with blindness or disabilities the option to save for disability-related expenses without putting their federal means tested benefits at risk.

 

Illinois ABLE offers a range of investment options to match constituents’ goals and comfort with risk. From aggressive options seeking higher returns to conservative investments that place capital preservation over growth, Illinois ABLE has choices for every investor. Each portfolio is underpinned by passively managed index funds across all traditional asset classes including cash and cash equivalents, fixed income, public equities, and real estate.

 

Investment Consultant:  Marquette Associates

 

Eligibility:  Prospective investment managers must be managed by one of the following entities:

 

          • Registered Investment Advisor

          • Registered Investment Company

 

The Treasurer’s Office will only consider – with the exception of sub-advisory firms owned by minorities, women, veterans, or persons with a disability – registered investment companies that offer pooled investment vehicles that comply with the Investment Act of 1940 for externally managed programs, including the following pooled investment vehicles:

 

          • Mutual Funds

          • Index Funds

          • Exchange-Traded Funds

 

Secure Choice Retirement Savings Program

The Illinois State Treasurer’s office administers the Illinois Secure Choice Savings Program Act (Secure Choice) on behalf of the Secure Choice Board.  Secure Choice is run by a seven-person Board, with Treasurer Frerichs serving as Chair.

 

Secure Choice is a retirement savings program for workers in Illinois that do not have access to a workplace retirement savings option.  Secure Choice offers Illinois businesses with at least 25 employees, that have been in business for two or more years, and who do not currently provide a qualified savings plan, the option to either offer a private market savings vehicle, or automatically enroll their employees into Secure Choice.

 

Illinois Secure Choice offers a range of investment options, from aggressive investments seeking higher returns to conservative investments options that seek to protect the principal. When individuals invest in Secure Choice, they get access to high-quality funds and other investment options, the value of which vary with market conditions. This includes cash and cash equivalents, fixed income, public equities, and real estate.

 

Investment Consultant:  Segal Marco Advisors

 

Eligibility:  Prospective investment managers must be managed by one of the following entities:

 

          • Registered Investment Advisor

          • Registered Investment Company

 

The Treasurer’s Office will only consider – with the exception of sub-advisory firms owned by minorities, women, veterans, or persons with a disability – registered investment companies that offer pooled investment vehicles that comply with the Investment Act of 1940 for externally managed programs, including the following pooled investment vehicles:

 

          • Mutual Funds

          • Index Funds

          • Exchange-Traded Funds

 

State Investments

The Treasurer’s Office is charged with providing treasury, cash management, and investment support to Illinois government agencies, boards and commissions in a manner that provides the most advantageous solution to their individual needs.  The Treasurer’s Office manages State Investments, with assets of approximately $12-$15 billion, providing the necessary liquidity to meet the State’s daily obligations while investing remaining funds in authorized short/long-term investment opportunities.

 

The Treasurer’s Office utilized external managers to invest in a limited number of assets classes (e.g. municipal bonds, corporate bonds).  

 

Investment Consultant:  Marquette Associates

 

Eligibility:  External managers seeking to support the State Investment portfolio must partake in a Request for Proposal (RFP) process when opportunities become available.  RFP’s are posted on the Treasurer's Procurement webpage. To receive automatic email notifications when new RFPs are issued, sign up for procurement notification system

 

Investment Policy Statements

The Treasurer’s Office maintains investment policy statements for each investment program under the Treasurer’s purview.  These policies provide detailed information on each program’s investment objectives, investment parameters, administrative responsibilities, contractual needs, and reporting requirements.   

 

MWVD and Illinois-Based Investment Managers

The Treasurer’s Office is focused on providing business opportunities to investment managers based in Illinois and firms owned by minorities, women, veterans, and persons with a disability (MWVD).  Please visit the relevant pages for more info:  MWVD Firms and Illinois Firms

 

Contact Us

If you manage an investment vehicle and are seeking consideration or have general questions about doing business with the Treasurer’s Office, please email Investments@IllinoisTreasurer.gov