Bespoke Solutions for Premier Institutions

At many endowments, foundations, institutions, and family offices, in-house investment management is under-resourced. The challenging landscape of the global economy and financial markets requires experienced professionals with a singular focus on investing. Compounding the dilemma, maintaining fiduciary responsibility has become increasingly complex.

At many endowments, foundations, institutions, and family offices, in-house investment management is under-resourced. The challenging landscape of the global economy and financial markets requires experienced professionals with a singular focus on investing. Compounding the dilemma, maintaining fiduciary responsibility has become increasingly complex.

Cerity Partners’ boutique Outsourced Chief Investment Officer (OCIO) practice works with a limited number of clients to create bespoke solutions, providing the effective fiduciary oversight and institutional investment expertise that long-term asset management demands. Clients can rest assured that their assets are under careful, disciplined stewardship on an ongoing basis.

Cerity Partners OCIO Claims Compliance with GIPS®
(Global Investment Performance Standards)

Our track record isn’t just about our results – it’s about our commitment to integrity, credibility, and transparency. We firmly believe that results are only as valid as the methodology used to report them, which is why we claim compliance with the CFA Institute’s Global Investment Performance Standards.

Our Philosophy

At the heart of our business model is a close partnership with a select number of clients. We take the boutique nature of our business seriously, striving to make each client feel as if they have their own in-house investment team. We view each client as a true partner, valuing their unique needs and goals. Clients benefit from our extensive resources, including dedicated investment, accounting, operations, client service, and legal personnel. We understand that being a good partner goes beyond simply providing investment results. We work closely with clients on a variety of other projects, from help with audit needs to donor relations.

Our Approach

We do not believe in a “one size fits all” approach to portfolio construction. We start by understanding the return goals, risk tolerance, and unique needs of each client. We then construct a portfolio designed to best meet those needs, with a prudent level of concentration that reflects our conviction. Portfolios reflect our “best ideas” across a variety of traditional and alternative investment strategies.

We remain committed to a few simple ideas:

  • Collaborative decision-making

  • Multi-manager, multi-asset class portfolio construction

  • Rigorous due diligence on each investment

  • Extensive risk management

Underlying those simple tenets is a comprehensive, process-oriented approach.

Our Process

We focus on investing in what we believe are the best investment managers in the world across traditional and alternative asset classes. We have been investing for many years and have cultivated long-term relationships with hard-to-access, top-tier managers globally. We pride ourselves on our extensive networks, rigorous underwriting, and exhaustive approach to manager selection.

We believe long-term outperformance requires an active approach to asset allocation. Through our intensive research process, we form a view of the market environment and position our clients’ portfolios to take advantage of the opportunities we identify. We adjust asset class weightings and use other techniques, such as hedges and overlay strategies, to create what we believe is the optimal portfolio for the years ahead. While we have a long-term outlook, we recognize that markets change daily – sometimes meaningfully. During those periods of high volatility, we can reposition our clients’ portfolios to take advantage of any new opportunities.

Risk management is a critical part of our investment process. Using both internal and external tools, we analyze a client’s portfolio as well as each underlying investment. Our proprietary “risk dashboard” provides a comprehensive assessment of the risk profile of a client’s portfolio. In addition to monitoring the overall portfolio, the risk management team is integrated into the investment due diligence process process for each investment.

Our Solutions

We understand that no two clients are alike, so we built our business around customization. We work closely with each client to establish long-term investment goals and then design a program that best meets those needs.

Cerity Partners OCIO offers several solutions for creating portfolios, including a “building block” option, a separate account option, and hybrid options. Each of these solutions provides a high degree of customization.

Multi-asset class portfolio solutions

We partner with our clients to develop multi-asset class portfolio solutions that reflect their needs. We can build a bespoke solution whether they are starting from scratch or have an existing portfolio.

Mission-aligned investing

We collaborate with clients to establish and refine environmental, social, and governance (ESG) objectives, as well as Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) strategies aligned with their mission. We then translate these objectives into investment solutions, from negative screens to proactive investments. Our innovative portfolio design approach seeks to optimize risk-adjusted financial return and mission alignment – without compromising investment rigor.

GIPS Compliance

The Cerity Partners OCIO claims compliance with Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS), demonstrating our commitment to full disclosure and fair representation of investment performance.

Our Partnership Experience

Our clients deserve to know how their capital is invested. Quantitative reporting is supplemented with qualitative commentary so that our clients understand the rationale behind our decisions.

We believe that being a good partner goes beyond simply providing investment results, so clients also benefit from our assistance with:

  • Accounting
  • Operations
  • Client Service
  • Audits
  • Donor Relations
Our team came together with a single mission: to be the most trusted OCIO partner in the industry. And that mission is what drives us every day.”

Chris Bittman, Partner

Our Team

Each Cerity Partners OCIO team member brings a different perspective to the table. Before joining Cerity Partners, our team members developed expertise in asset allocation, manager selection, and risk management at premier organizations, including the University of Colorado Foundation, the University of Texas Investment Management Company, and Baylor University. Cerity Partners OCIO colleagues serve on nonprofit boards and are involved in numerous charitable organizations.