List of the 3 largest pension funds in Europe
In the following, we are introducing you to five of the largest pension investment funds in Europe that are also part of our list.
1. Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP (Netherlands)
The Dutch ABP fund is one of the world’s largest pension funds, dedicated to civil servants in the Netherlands. The Heerlen-based pension fund manages over €570BN.
Update 2024: In 2023, the Dutch pension fund Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP acquired Kentner, a Dutch energy infrastructure solutions company, together with OMERS.
2. Pensioenfonds Zorg en Welzijn (PFZW) (Netherlands)
The PGGM pension fund is another major Dutch pension fund with more than €270BN in assets. The fund from Zeist is a major playor in global investment markets, also investing in private equity through its subsidiary AlpInvest Partners.
3. Norway Government Pension Fund Global (Norway)
The Norwegian Government Pension Fund is another major playor on financial markets. It holds a significant share of global stocks and is also an important investor in Norway.
Columns included in our list
Through our list, you can get an overview of the largest European pension funds. In detail, the list offers the most important data points to get in touch with the most important pension plan providers:
- E-Mail (if available)
- LinkedIn Page (if available)
- Assets under Management in €M (approximation, if available)
Especially the LinkedIn pages of the pension funds helps to get in touch with the executives and investment managers of the included firms.
Picture source: Alexander Kagan
European countries with most pension funds
In Europe, only a few countries in Europe have a relevant number of active pension funds. The European countries with most pension funds are the United Kingdom (UK), Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland.
In the United Kingdom (UK), there are more than 70 major pension funds. Many firms in the UK offer workplace pension schemes. One major pension fund in the UK is, for example, the Universities Superannuation Scheme. The pension fund invests in listed equities, private markets, fixed income, as well as govermental bonds.
One pillar of the Dutch pension system is based on collectively contributing to a pension fund together with the employer. A major Dutch pension fund is, for instance, the Stichting Pensioenfonds ABP. The fund manages more than €600BN and is an active investor. For instance, the pension fund is a large stakeholder in an European car park manager or the Portuguese motorway opeartion company.
Also in Switzerland, company-powered pension plans are an essential part of the retirement planning of the employees. Hence, there is a large number of pension funds in Switzerland. For example, one major pension fund is the “Pensionskasse des Bundes PUBLICA”. The Swiss pension fund invests in various asset classes, for instance goverment bonds, corporate bonds, Swiss and global equities and real estate.
In Germany, once pension funds, mostly initiated by large companies, were a cornerstone of the retirement system. Today, most pension funds are slowly disappearing from the market. However, there are still some major pension plans active in Germany. For example, the Bayerische Versorgungskammer is still a large-scale pension plan that is also an active investor in real estate. The fund manages more than €107BN and invests in equities, alternative investments (like private equity, infrastructure, timber and hedge funds), as well as debt papers and real estate. In the real estate sector, the pension fund invests in funds as well as direct investments.