We’re pleased to announce after having spent several months conducting a thorough due diligence process, our funds have now merged.
Why did VicSuper and First State Super merge?
One of the key ways to deliver better outcomes for members is to increase our size and scale. As a result of the merger we’ll become one of Australia’s largest super funds, managing more than $125 billion in retirement savings on behalf of more than 1.1 million members around the country.
By increasing our scale we can:
- provide access to a greater range of investment opportunities;
- provide a better deal through cost savings (such as potentially reducing the investment fees you pay into the future)
- continue to build on our leading responsible investment approach and have a much stronger voice with the companies we engage with
- provide even better support and services due to our larger team and its shared expertise
- develop innovative retirement income solutions for our retirees — meaning we can provide innovative products, services and advice that can help set us apart from other super funds.
Why now?Right now, VicSuper continues to perform very well. However, we feel it’s important to be on the front foot when it comes to making sure our members continue to be set up for success to get better outcomes from their retirement savings. We’re confident this merger presents us with a really valuable opportunity to do exactly that and build on our strengths so we continue to deliver on what we know is important to all our stakeholders.
We’re seeing a number of funds merge, and we believe this trend will continue in the coming years. With more larger, or jumbo funds in the industry, one of the key ways to deliver better outcomes for members is to increase our size. When we merge in June next year, we’ll become one of Australia’s largest super funds, managing more than $124 billion in retirement savings on behalf of more than 1.1 million members around the country.
Why First State Super?We’ve been considering potential merger partners that could be suitable for us for some time and we have a lot in common with First State Super. We’re both long standing profit to member funds, our members come from very similar industries and we also believe in the importance of quality financial advice to help our members get better retirement outcomes. We’re identified how we could leverage our common values and strengths to provide even better services and investment opportunities for our members.
What do the funds have in common?
The funds have a lot in common:
- Our culture and values are very similar. We’re both profit to member funds and both put our members first in everything we do with our entire team focused on helping our members get better retirement outcomes.
- Both funds have heritage in the public sector and we also have growing number of members from the private sector. Our members come from very similar industries (education, community services and health).
- We both have a focus on responsible investing and have both been recently recognised as global leaders* in this area;
- Both of us have strong in house financial planning services and believe in the importance of quality financial advice to help our members make the most of their retirement savings;
- We both have a proven track record in developing market-leading advice solutions and retirement products for members;
With greater scale we could offer even better services and access a greater range of investment opportunities that could deliver strong, sustainable investment returns over the long-term.
What will happen to VicSuper’s brand and culture?The VicSuper brand will stay the same after 1 July 2020. Both VicSuper and First State Super have always placed a high priority on culture and that won’t change.
Is it still business as usual?Absolutely. Right now you don’t need to do anything, we will continue to provide the same high level of service to members and employers like we always have. Our members and employers will always be our number one priority.
What are the next steps?Over the coming months our teams will be working closely to bring the two funds together. We’ll keep you updated on our progress, and we look forward to bringing you news of the unique product and service improvements that we’re confident will be achieved through this merger.
Who is First State Super?
First State Super is one of Australia’s largest profit-for-member super funds. They are a public offer fund, which means, like us, they are open to everyone.
- They manage more than $100 billion in retirement savings
- They provide superannuation and advice to around 800,000 members and clients nation wide
- First State Super members and clients have access to over 220 financial planners across a broad network of regional offices.
You can find out more about First State Super, on their website.
Why is First State Super changing its brand?
First State Super manages three brands under the First State Super banner – First State Super (our super fund), StatePlus (our advice business) - and now VicSuper in July this year.
As we look to the future, we’ve thought deeply about the need to create a single brand. One recognisable brand is more cost-effective to build and support over time. We are very conscious of our responsibility to spend our members’ funds prudently. By consolidating under one brand, we’re able to amplify our impact and achieve greater economies of scale.
Why did First State Super choose the name Aware Super?
It’s a brand that reflects who we are and who we strive to be in the future. It’s a name we chose together in consultation with many of our members and a name that members liked because it clearly signals our action and intention.
Aware Super echoes our core purpose (to be a force for good, shaping the best outcomes for our members, their families, communities and the superannuation industry).
Aware Super celebrates and honours the spirit and actions of all our members. The extraordinary Australians, who we are proud to serve. It also demonstrates our ongoing commitment to action and impact – for our members, their communities and the world we live in.
Because we are Aware our:
- Members pay low fees2 and receive strong long-term performance3, without compromising on the integrity of the way we invest.
- Members access their super through our intuitive award-winning app1, over the phone or face to face via our dedicated service teams in more than 68 locations.
- Members benefit from easy access to one of the industry’s most comprehensive range of quality financial advice and education services.
- Members’ assets are invested to generate jobs, improve our communities and support a sustainable economy at the same time achieving great returns and delivering strong retirement outcomes.
Aware Super is simply a name that describes who we have always been.
When are these changes happening?
A progressive rollout of the new brand name will begin in July 2020 and to be completed by the end of October 2020. By the end of October, the majority of our key assets, buildings, systems and collateral will all be updated to reflect our new brand.
For more information about the brand name change for First State Super visit firststatesuper.com.au1The First State Super app was awarded Gold at the 2019 Sydney Design Awards for the category Digital - New Service or Application.
2The total annual fee (inclusive of admin and investment fees) for our Growth option is 1.10% p.a., the industry average is 1.43% p.a., Chant West Super Fund Fee Survey, March 2020, based on a $50,000 balance in a Growth option.
3First State Super Growth option as sourced from the SuperRatings Fund Crediting Rate Survey for the SuperRatings SR50 Balanced (60-76) Index delivered a rolling 10 year return to 31 May 2020 of 7.77%. This is compared to the SR50 Balanced (60-76) Index median rolling 10 year return to 31 May 2020 of 7.13%. Returns are calculated net of investment fees, tax and implicit asset-based administration fees. The SR50 is an index of 50 super funds whereby each fund is assessed on criteria such as their size, history of returns and allocation of assets to growth assets between 60 -76 percent of the investment. This disclaimer is related to the First State Super accumulation product. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.
What’s the timeline?From now until 1 July 2020 our teams will be working together to integrate functions across the funds, and we will look to bring the two funds together into one merged entity as of 1 July 2020.
Will I have cheaper fees as a result of the larger fund?
We’ll keep you updated on our progress, and we look forward to bringing you news of the unique product and service improvements that we’re confident will be achieved through this merger into the future.
Firstly, we’re working towards providing members with an annualised collective investment and administrative fee decrease in future, which we’ll confirm when more information is available over the coming months.
What will happen to my insurance cover?If you have insurance on 30 June 2020, your insurance cover will remain in place on 1 July 2020. If you need to take any action after that date to maintain your cover, First State Super will contact you to let you know what you need to do.
We encourage you to take this opportunity to review your insurance to make sure it is appropriate for your needs. If you would like to change or cancel your insurance, you can do this easily online using VicSuper MembersOnline.
Inactive accountsIf your super account has not received a contribution or rollover for a continuous period of 16 months and you have not elected to keep your cover, your account is considered ‘inactive’. Under these circumstances, any insurance cover held through that account must generally be cancelled unless you have elected to keep it.
The merger of VicSuper and First State Super will be considered an activity on your account on 1 July 2020. This means that if your account has been inactive for less than 16 months on 1 July 2020, you will have a further 16 months before your account may become inactive.
What will happen to my super?
It’s business as usual and you don’t need to do anything. Your retirement savings will continue to be managed by VicSuper/First State Super. Over the coming months, we’ll be developing a strategy to bring our investments together and harness our combined size in ways that will help us deliver strong, sustainable returns for our members.
Will you still have local offices and be in regional areas?Yes, we are committed to providing superannuation advice where and when our members need it. We will maintain our local offices and actually expand them through First State Super’s local presence so combined we’ll have 12 serviced offices throughout Victoria.
Will I get a new member number and new website login details?No, nothing will change at this stage with your super account and the product you currently hold. You will still be able to log into to view your VicSuper MembersOnline account.
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