We have been managing assets on behalf of Irish pension funds since 1939, developing a comprehensive range of strategies and services targeted at clients’ changing needs.

Our DB service offering provides trustees with a fully integrated investment framework under one roof – from risk modelling and portfolio optimisation, through to dynamic de-risking.

We can help you decide what's right for your pension plan. Our investment solutions provide you with a truly dynamic approach to managing your pension plan that links your investment strategy to your organisation's goals.

Our approach

Our DB offering provides trustees with a robust portfolio modelling service to match your targeted return, yield and volatility objectives. We work within your strategic asset allocation to deliver an efficient portfolio at each step of your de-risking journey, ensuring the optimal matching of assets with the profile of your liabilities.

As standard, we provide additional monitoring and implementation services designed to assist pension schemes in the efficient de-risking of their assets, taking advantage of market opportunities or improvements in solvency.

We work seamlessly with you the trustee, and your adviser, to achieve the most cost-effective solution. An overview of our approach is summarised below:




The key advantages of the service are:

  • Strong governance – we address strategy and execution separately, enabling trustees to focus on key decisions.
  • ILIM’s partnership approach is designed to ensure all relevant expertise is exploited, and conflicts of interest are avoided.
  • An intelligent overlay, because opportunities to de-risk from equities do not always coincide with favourable bond yield levels.
  • Our proven ability to execute promptly while minimising transaction costs. 
  • An automated process with strong controls and a low risk tolerance.
  • Transparency of position, valuation and costs and bespoke reporting.
  • Investment solutions that provide diversification across asset class, investment style and managers.
  • Volatility and drawdown managed through innovative investment choices.


Reasons to invest

Our DB360°solution is a comprehensive product & service offering, centered on delivering on our clients’ key objectives. 

ILIM will help you to identify and implement a unique solution for your DB Scheme using the following approach:

Step 1: Determining trustee requirements and preferences

The first stage in the process involves liaising with the trustees and their advisors to set parameters, such as the scheme’s required rate of return, preferences regarding risk appetite and liquidity, as well as implementation parameters. Our partnership approach to this process emphasises collaboration between all relevant parties.

We work with trustees and their advisors to assess the following:

Step 2: asset & liability modelling and strategy development

Asset and liability modelling is a core part in identifying how solvency volatility can be reduced. Importantly, our approach develops solutions that are specific to the duration of the scheme’s liabilities, rather than utilising generic spot rate duration funds. Based on an analysis of the scheme’s liabilities and current investment portfolio, we will work with you and your advisers to develop a bespoke investment strategy that supports this objective.

Our Quantitative Strategies Team is an integral part of DB360°. By analysing your specific scheme data (e.g. cash flow requirements), the team establishes the key risks the pension scheme is currently exposed to. We then develop a strategy to reduce those risks, and to manage the impact of these risks on member benefits and the company balance sheet.

The team is composed of quantitative analysts and mathematicians. The team reviews asset classes, their interactions with one other and how cash flow, risk and return requirements can be best matched, through optimised growth and defensive portfolios.

Whether you are looking to de-risk and move into a matched portfolio, or are just trying to get your assets to work harder for you, performing asset and liability modelling analysis is essential for your scheme.

Your portfolio manager will work with the Quantitative Strategies Team to develop an appropriate growth asset and liability matching strategy for your scheme. Diversification across asset class, investment style and manager is available, to ensure that we deliver a tailored solution to meet your individual preferences. Solutions are drawn from the following universe of all available asset classes and strategies including: 

Defensive assets ListGrowth Assets ListVolatility Reduction List

 Step 3: intelligent de-risking

As a scheme’s solvency improves through asset growth or declining liabilities, a systematic repositioning of the assets occurs in the form of a trigger point strategy. The trigger point strategy for the scheme is designed to signal appropriate exit points from the growth portfolio. Rather than allocating directly to the matched bond portfolio, our approach also identifies appropriate entry levels into defensive assets. This approach includes temporary tactical allocations to cash or short-dated yield funds, awaiting more attractive entry points into matching assets.

Our integrated service provides daily solvency, market and daily trigger-point monitoring with the execution of de-risking steps within 24 hours of a trigger being reached. As you would expect from ILIM , the execution of asset switches is carried out efficiently and with the aim of minimising costs. The process is subject to strict daily and weekly review and controls.


Our team

Our Defined Benefit team collaborates with teams across ILIM, helping our clients achieve their investment goals. Our focus is on providing you with support across our full range of funds and services. To start or continue your conversation with us, please contact one of the team.

Key Contacts


  • Donal Keating

    Head of DB +353-1-704-1200 Email

    Donal joined ILIM in 2020 and leads on our Defined Benefit and ALM (Asset Liability Modelling) offering within the Distribution Team. He is a qualified actuary with over 20 years’ experience.

    He works with clients to ensure the asset strategies for their pension arrangements are fit for purpose and aligned with their objectives. This includes all elements of journey plans for DB, including how de-risking interacts with future funding, developing dashboard reporting for Trustees and considering the potential impacts of any settlement options such as buy-ins or buy-outs etc. He also ensures his clients’ wider strategic considerations are being met when they look at their investments.

    Prior to joining ILIM, Donal was a Director in the Pensions Group in PwC where his clients included many of the largest employers in Ireland. He previously worked in Willis Towers Watson as an actuarial consultant where he acted as a Scheme Actuary for many years, delivering the full range of statutory services to Trustee clients.

    He is a regular contributor on pension matters both on national radio and at industry events.

  • Padraic Nolan

    Senior Portfolio Manager +353-1-704-1200 Email

    Padraic is a member of ILIM’s Distribution team. He is responsible for managing Defined Benefit corporate pension scheme relationships and developing investment solutions for clients, including investment strategy, asset allocation and risk management.

    Padraic has 30 years’ experience in pension investment management. Prior to joining ILIM in 2015, he worked for eight years as a senior investment consultant/principal at Mercer, where he provided the full spectrum of investing consulting services to trustees of Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution pension schemes. He also spent 17 years as a senior client portfolio manager with AIB, Ulster Bank and KBC Asset Management. Padraic has been an adjunct third-level lecturer for 14 years, teaching investment management. 

    Padraic earned a BComm and MBS in Banking and Finance from University College Dublin. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation, the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) designation and the CFA Certificate in ESG Investing and the GARP Sustainability and Climate Risk (SCR) Certificate. He is a Qualified Financial Advisor (QFA), Retirement Planning Advisor (RPA) and Pension Trustee Practitioner (PTP) through LIA Ireland, and is an IIPM Qualified Pension Trustee (QPT).



  • Brian MacHale

    Senior Portfolio Manager +353-1-704-1200 Email

    Brian joined ILIM in 2016  and is part of the Defined Benefit Client Relationship team in ILIM.

    He has 21 years’ experience in the investment industry. Prior to joining ILIM, Brian worked with Eos Partners, a New York boutique alternative investment firm, where he was responsible for developing and advising clients on optimising their alternative investment portfolios. Prior to that, Brian worked for 12 years at alternative investment firm LibertyView Capital (a Lehman Brothers company), where he was responsible for leading North American institutional sales and marketing.

    Brian graduated from the Shannon College of Hotel Management with a degree in International Hotel Management.

  • Elaine O'Shea

    Senior Portfolio Manager +353-1-704-1200 Email

    Elaine is part of the Defined Benefit Client Relationship team in ILIM.

    Prior to joining ILIM, she spent 14 years with Danske Bank, initially as money market manager of the then National Irish Bank balance sheet, taking responsibility for the bank’s funding and liquidity requirements whilst managing the bank’s interest rate risk. More recently Elaine developed and managed the Fixed Income & derivative sales desk at Danske, dealing mostly with institutional and large multinational corporate clients. In this role, Elaine gained experience working with Irish pension funds offering risk modelling, LDI and sovereign annuity portfolio construction services. Elaine served as a trustee of Danske Bank Hybrid pension scheme. Previously, Elaine also worked for Pfizer corporate treasury, MeesPierson Investor Services and AIB Security Services. Elane earned a master’s in Real Estate from DIT and also studied the MSc. Investment & Treasury at DCU.

  • Robert McGuire

    Client Relationship Analyst +353-1-704-1200 Email

    Robert joined ILIM in 2021 and sits on our Defined Benefit desk within the Distribution team. He is responsible for ensuring that his clients investment strategies are aligned with their objectives depending on their stage of the DB Journey Plan. These strategies include asset allocation across ILIM’s product range, Asset Liability Modelling and Responsible Investing.

    Prior to joining ILIM Robert held roles within the investment consultancy and fiduciary management practice at Willis Towers Watson where he provided investment consulting solutions to clients. He holds a BSc in Financial Mathematics from University College Cork.

How can we help?

Irish Life Investment Managers (ILIM) is the appointed asset manager to Irish Life Group Limited. ILIM is committed to innovating and leading the market with best in class investment solutions designed to meet the specific investment needs of our clients. Call us at: +353-1-704 1200 or email [email protected]

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