The New Zealand Superannuation Fund (NZS) has completed its first-round cull of managers up for the biggest outstanding local equities mandate, according to Fiona Mackenzie, NZS head of investments.
“We have made progress in appointing an external manager to replace AMP, with shortlisting complete,” Mackenzie said.
NZS reviewed virtually all of the country’s local share managers during the process with the short-list emerging just a week after Salt Funds Management secured the massive $690 million AMP Capital NZ shares gig.
However, Mackenzie said the, approximately $260 million mandate – managed by AMP Capital until last November – could yet remain in-house.
“While the RFI process is a genuine one, it’s worth noting that we do not have to make an appointment,” Mackenzie said. “We have the in-house capacity to manage the funds on an ongoing basis.”
Tim Mitchell heads the NZS internal local shares team, which also includes Brian Bourdôt, Tip Piumsomboon and Tim Koller.
Including the former AMP money, the NZS in-house team manages about $600 million in NZ equities.
“As previously discussed, we are not able to disclose the specifics of how the funds formerly managed by AMP are currently being managed by us (e.g. active/passive) – because we are a large holder, this is potentially market-sensitive information,” Mackenzie said.
As well as the in-house team, NZS has outsourced active local equity management to both Devon Funds Management and Milford Asset Management, which is currently under investigation by the Financial Markets Authority for trading irregularities.
NZS told Investment News NZ previously it “will be watching the outcome of the investigation closely”.