Penn Endowment Grows to $6.6 billion, a 20.2 % Return on Investments That Is Strongest in 10 Years

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Media Contact:Phyllis Holtzman | holtzman@pobox.upenn.edu | 215-898-8721September 20, 2007

PHILADELPHIA -- The University of Pennsylvania's endowment returned 20.2 percent for the fiscal year that ended June 30, bringing its total market value to $6.6 billion. The endowment has grown more than 65% during the past three years thanks to strong investment returns, new gifts and the reinvestment of reserves.

The endowment registered its best performance in a decade this year.  Returns were strong across the board with solid gains in domestic and international equities, emerging markets, absolute return, private equity, real estate and natural resources.

"Penn has recruited a talented investment team to lead and manage our endowment funds.  With a new strategy in place, the portfolio outperformed its composite benchmark by 150 basis points over the past year.  We are thrilled with the continued improvement in our investment performance," said Penn Executive Vice President Craig Carnaroli.   

The endowment is managed by the Office of Investments, under the leadership of Kristin Gilbertson, chief investment officer.  Since joining Penn three years ago, Gilbertson has implemented new initiatives in staffing and asset allocation.  The office works closely with an Investment Board comprised of Penn trustees.  

Penn's endowment supports a wide variety of instruction, research, teaching, social and cultural activities.   The endowment currently contributes 8 percent to the University's academic operating budget.  In the past three years, the endowment has provided more than $470 million for such programs.