AsianInvestor today announces the recipients of its Institutional Excellence Awards, designed to recognise both best practice and improving standards among asset owners across Asia Pacific.

Our editorial team canvassed executives at fund management companies, consultancies, banks and other service providers to generate a shortlist of asset owners deserving of recognition. We then engaged directly with these institutions. AsianInvestor would like to thank the many people throughout the region who helped us for their time and their candour.

In some cases the awards recognise incremental improvements in a given market. In other cases they are meant to highlight best-in-class at a regional or global level. Our emphasis rested on fund governance, on the internal capabilities of the asset owner, and on its ability to innovate and respond to changing market conditions.

Given the diverse nature of the region's asset owners, the spirit of our awards is to highlight excellence and improvement in given conditions, rather than to try to identify who is "the best" or who has the "best performance", as these labels are too subjective and do not reflect the realities among investors that often face long-term objectives.

Some of these investors may well be "the best", but we leave it to their management, trustees, members and other stakeholders to make such determinations.

All of the recipients will be invited to attend our Institutional Excellence Awards black-tie dinner on Wednesday, December 2 at a new hotel, The South Beach in Singapore. This will run in conjunction with our two-day annual Southeast Asia Institutional Investment Forum at the same venue.

Complete write-ups explaining our decisions and profiling these institutions will appear online in the coming weeks, and will be presented together in the February print edition of AsianInvestor.

For details on attending our Institutional Excellence Awards dinner, please contact AsianInvestor's commercial director, Terry Rayner, at terry.rayner@haymarket.asia or +852 3175 1963.

For more information about the institutional investment conference, please contact AsianInvestor's head of conferences, Alastair Hills, at alastair.hills@haymarket.asia or +852 3175 1986.

Institutional categories

Recipients in this category are recognised for excellence among regional peers of a comparable nature. Differences in institutional set-up and objectives can vary widely even within these narrow categories, and measuring progress can take a matter of months, a year, or several years.

Reserves manager
Monetary Authority of Singapore

Sovereign wealth fund
GIC

Insurance company (general account)
Ping An Life Insurance

Public pension fund
Bureau of Labor Funds

Pension fund, private sector
Jardine Matheson

Endowment
National University of Singapore

Market categories

Recipients in this category are recognised for excellence within the country or sub-region in which they are domiciled. In some cases these asset owners are among the global elite; in other cases, they are showing skill and professionalism appropriate to local regulations and market conditions.

Australia/New Zealand
Future Fund

Mainland China
China Life Insurance

Hong Kong/Taiwan
Cathay Life Insurance

Japan
Government Pension Investment Fund

Korea
Hanwha Life Insurance

Southeast Asia
Government Pension Fund (Thailand)

Expert categories

Our expert categories recognise institutions that excel consistently in fundamental areas. Although every asset owner is different – it is often difficult to model oneself against another because of local conditions – we believe these institutions do indeed offer a template for others to study.

Governance
New Zealand Superannuation Fund

Investment capabilities
State Administration of Foreign Exchange

Innovation
Hong Kong Jockey Club

Socially responsible investing
Hesta Industry Super Fund

Contribution to capital markets development
Monetary Authority of Singapore

AsianInvestor congratulates this year's recipients. See you in Singapore!