Kiwi Wealth is on the hunt for a head of trading to consolidate and modernise the manager’s portfolio implementation systems.
Simon O’Grady, Kiwi Wealth chief investment officer, said the newly-created head of trading role has been created to centralise the various securities dealing functions currently scattered across different portfolio management systems.
“The aim is to bring together trading of FX, equities, fixed income, derivatives and so on into one framework and build out an end-to-end structure,” O’Grady said. “It’s not really a dealer role, but we’re looking for someone who knows how to get best execution done.”
He said investors would see the benefit of any back-office implementation efficiencies passed on in higher returns.
“Every basis point cost we can save in operations is invaluable to investors,” O’Grady said.
While the head of trading job is a new role, he said the recent departures of a couple of Kiwi Wealth operations staff – including portfolio implementation manager, Nigel Croke – prompted an upgrade of the position.
Croke started as market risk manager at the $40 billion Accident Compensation (ACC) fund this month after a six-year stint at Kiwi Wealth. Both organisations are Wellington-based and also part of the same government-owned family: ACC and the NZ Superannuation Fund (NZS) own about half of the Kiwi Wealth parent company.
O’Grady said Kiwi Wealth and its Crown Financial Institution part-owners regularly “share ideas” across a range of common interests.
He said the new head of trading would inherit an excellent risk attribution system developed by Croke but the job also involved an IT overhaul to keep Kiwi Wealth up to date.
“Technology is developing rapidly in all areas, including investment management,” O’Grady said. “We’re operating now in a framework of open architecture databases and APIs [application programming interface] and we need to stay ahead of the IT curve.”
Kiwi Wealth recently cracked through $6 billion in funds under management, including almost $4.3 billion in the group’s KiwiSaver scheme.