Wellington-based financial services firm, Booster, is considering a tilt at the superannuation master trust business.
David Beattie, Booster principal, said while the employer super master trust market was a mature business, there were still opportunities for the right offering.
“We would be able to apply some of our KiwiSaver functionality adapted to meet specific employer and employee super needs,” Beattie said.
Booster also runs a retail superannuation scheme (the old Fidelity Super-Super Plan) to house UK pension transfers.
Figures from the EriksensGlobal September quarter master trust survey size the NZ market at just over $8.7 billion, split unevenly between six providers: the AMP NZ Retirement Trust (NZRT) has almost $3.5 billion of the pie followed by SuperLife ($2.5 billion) and ASB ($1.5 billion).
While employer-based savings plans are languishing in the post-KiwiSaver world, the master trust market will linger on for some time yet as contributions continue to roll in. Master trusts may even see further growth as a number of stand-alone employer schemes seek to hand over responsibilities.
Beattie said the master trust plan remains a “work in progress” for now with a number of other projects on the go, including a potential annuity-like product to meet the needs of a growing retiree market.
Currently, the Lifetime Income Group is the sole provider of a guaranteed retirement income product in NZ with its ‘variable annuities’ offer.
“We’re keen to see another option,” he said.
Peter Long, Booster senior product manager, outlined the opportunties for annuities in NZ at the group’s recent annual conference in Wellington.
The November conference attracted record numbers, Beattie said, in a watershed year for the NZ financial advisory industry.
In addition to the onset of the Financial Services Legislation Amendment Act (FSLAA) regime, NZ financial advisers were facing an onslaught of technological change, he said.
“The arrival of artificial intelligence and other technology is challenging traditional advice models,” Beattie said. “Our view is that advisers have to embrace the technology.”
He said technology can help free up advisers from mundane tasks, giving them more time to deal directly with clients.
“We think the hybrid robo-advice model is the way of the future,” Beattie said.
Booster manages over $3 billion, about half of which is in its KiwiSaver scheme.