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Denmark Largest Pension Fund ATP CIO Mikkel Svenstrup: Private Equity is Potentially A Pyramid Scheme

22nd September 2022 | Hong Kong

Expert Comment – Denmark largest Pension Fund ATP Chief Investment Officer Mikkel Svenstrup on Private Equity: “This is the start of, potentially, I’m saying potentially, a pyramid scheme.  Everybody’s selling to each other … Banks are lending against it.  These are the concerns I’ve been sharing.”  Mikkel Svenstrup: “In 2021, more than 80 per cent of the sales of portfolio companies by the private equity funds that ATP has invested in were either to another buyout group or were “continuation fund” deals.”  ATP was founded in 1964 to ensure Danish pensioners would have a supplement to their state pension. Today, ATP is one of Europe’s largest pension funds with 5.4 million members and pension assets exceeding DKK 947 billion ($125 billion).

“ Private Equity is Potentially A Pyramid Scheme Selling to Each Other & Banks Lending to Private Equity “


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Denmark largest Pension Fund ATP

ATP Chief Investment Officer Mikkel Svenstrup

ATP is a self-governing institution, established by the Danish Parliament by law in 1964. Today, the ATP Group is Denmark’s largest pension and processing company with 5.4 million members and pension assets exceeding DKK 947 billion ($125 billion). It is based in Hillerød and has around 3,000 employees working across three areas: managing pensions, investment and administration.


ATP Chief Investment Officer Mikkel Svenstrup

Mikkel Svenstrup started at ATP on 1 March 2020.  He was previously Chief Investment Officer at P+, Pensionskassen for Akademikere, formed via a merger between the pension funds JØP and DIP, a position he has held since January 2017. Until joining ATP, he was also a member of the board of directors of PKA+ Pension Forsikringsselskab A/S.

Prior to P+, he held management positions at, i.a. Nordea, UBS Investment Bank and Barclays Capital,  focusing on advisory business and sales to institutional investors across Scandinavia and the Benelux countries. He is a former co-owner of ScanRate Financial System A/S.  Mikkel is a former external lecturer at Aarhus University and has published in some of the leading international finance journals. Mikkel Svenstrup holds a cand.scient.oecon (MSc Mathematics-Economics) and a Ph.D in Finance from Aarhus University.

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