Two Australian pension funds QSuper, Sunsuper eye merger

Pension fund visual. Credit: Business Korea

Australian pension funds QSuper and Sunsuper are in early-stage discussions to merge and form the country’s largest pension manager, as regulatory pressure drives consolidation in the industry, known locally as superannuation.

A merger would create a fund managing over A$183 billion ($126 billion) in assets, based on their respective investment books, surpassing the A$160 million managed by AustralianSuper, currently the country’s largest fund.

In a statement late on Monday, the two funds said they were “engaged in preliminary, non-binding discussions about a possible partnership.” The end-goal of the talks was to merge, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

Any decision to move beyond preliminary discussions would depend on many factors, QSuper Chairman Karl Morris and Sunsuper Chairman Andrew Fraser said in the statement, without elaborating.

A public inquiry into Australia’s compulsory A$2.9 trillion pension system last year found that large fees charged by some managers were eroding workers’ savings, and that many were not putting customers’ interests ahead of their own.

In the aftermath of the inquiry, the regulator has increased the pressure on funds to find ways to deliver better returns to savers, including encouraging consolidation in the industry.

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) has also promised to step up scrutiny and push serious underperformers out of the sector.

QSuper currently has over A$113 billion in funds under administration, the statement said, while Sunsuper manages about A$70 billion in assets, according to its website.

Reuters

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.