Australian-headquartered multi-boutique firm Bennelong Funds Management is making a formal play for the NZ market with the launch of nine products offered under the trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition regime.
In a release last week, Bennelong chief, Craig Bingham, said the NZ effort coincided with the A$8 billion manager’s foray into Europe – with the opening of the London ‘BennBridge’ office – and “the exploration of business opportunities in the United States”.
“Due to the success of our boutiques and their funds in the Australian market, we are expanding our distribution footprint on a global scale,” Bingham said in the statement.
Bennelong supports seven underlying managers representing 11 individual funds, with the nine open products – covering Australian equities and global asset classes – on offer to NZ investors.
The Australian equities products include: four Bennelong Australian Equity Partners large to mid-cap funds; the small-cap Avoca Investment Management fund; and, another from “index unaware” Touchstone Asset Management.
NZ investors will also have access to Bennelong-backed global real estate and infrastructure products – managed by Quay Global Investors and 4D Infrastructure, respectively – and the Kardinia Capital absolute return fund.
The Bennelong funds have yet to appear on the Disclose register.
Ex-pat New Zealander Camelia Seric, Bennelong NSW/ACT distribution director, would be first point of contact for NZ investors.
Seric said Bennelong already had a number of NZ clients but was looking forward to building stronger relationships with investors and advisers this side of the ditch.
Prior to joining Bennelong as CEO in 2014, Bingham served for 10 years as head of Portfolio Partners, one of Australia’s seminal boutique fund managers that was ultimately absorbed into the UK firm, Aviva.
Bennelong is owned by the Bangarra Group (rebranded from the Benelong Group in 2015), which describes itself as a “private family office founded by Jeff Chapman in 2000”. Chapman built up a fortune over a previous entrepreneurial and corporate career straddling “Australian manufacturing, retailing and investment banking”.