Recently, the Board of Trustees approved a plan in conjunction with Wake Forest’s chief investment officer, Jim Dunn, to form an external for-profit asset capital management company called Verger Capital Management LLC, or Verger, for short. Verger will serve as Wake Forest’s outsourced CIO solution and ultimately replace the function of Wake Forest University’s Office of Investments. Jim Dunn has transitioned from his role as Wake Forest’s chief investment officer to become the Chief Executive Officer of Verger, and the Office of Investments employees will become employees of Verger.
As an outsourced solution, Wake Forest anticipates that Verger will provide access to additional investment opportunities, provide better access to best-in-class managers, and provide a solution for rising management, operational and administrative costs at the endowment level.
The move to an outsourced CIO solution for Wake Forest has been under discussion for several years, but recent trends in the investment industry and prospective growth show the timing is right for a transition. Smaller foundations and endowments have been moving towards an outsourced chief investment officer model, and industry analysts are projecting significant growth in this market over the next five years.