New Zealand Superannuation Fund (NZS) veteran, Tim Mitchell, has resigned after more than a decade in various senior roles at the organisation.
Mitchell moved to his most-recent strategic advice position earlier this year following a stint as head of NZ active equities for the NZ$33 billion fund. As well as consulting on the initial design of the fund, he also headed corporate strategy and public markets during his long career at the NZS.
“For the past 12 plus years I have had the pleasure of working with an outstanding group of colleagues building the super fund. From small beginnings the fund has grown into a globally recognised institution that we can be really proud of,” Mitchell said. “I’m taking some time away to explore opportunities in London – the fortunes of the fund will always be close to my heart and I will keenly follow its progress and that of the many my friends and colleagues I have working there.”
His current strategic role will not be replaced. Brian Bourdôt assumed Mitchell’s NZ equities duties this March, heading a team that includes portfolio manager, Daria Murray, and analyst Tip Piumsomboon.
NZS, which took over about NZ$300 million of passive local equities after firing the NZX-owned Smartshares from a mandate in 2009, switched to an active investment style for the in-house portfolio in 2012.
The in-house team currently manages about NZ$800 million of active NZ shares, including the NZ$281 million chunk removed from Milford Asset Management pending the outcome of a market manipulation investigation, and a NZ$300 million mandate it assumed control of after firing AMP Capital last November. NZS has yet to announce a replacement manager for the ex-AMP mandate.
Meanwhile, at last week’s Perfecting Investment Portfolios conference in Auckland, Roland Winn, NZS head of investment analysis, revealed the fund would shortly release its reworked ‘reference portfolio’.
According to the NZS website, the reference portfolio “is a shadow or notional portfolio of passive, low-cost, listed investments suited to the fund’s long-term investment horizon and risk profile”.
The current reference portfolio asset allocation is split 80/20 across growth and fixed income investments respectively.
– David Chaplin, Investment News NZ
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