Best of the Best 2023: Best Pension Fund
After winning the Best Super Fund award last year, UniSuper has taken out the Best Pension Fund title this year.
"UniSuper is an investment leader and innovator, rarely far from the winners' circle," says Alex Dunnin, director of research at Rainmaker Information.
This year UniSuper has won two other categories outright: Best Australian Shares Super Products and Best Shares ESG Super Products. It was shortlisted as a finalist in seven more categories.
UniSuper was shortlisted in four retirement categories: best value, moderate investments, growth investments and diversified ESG for retirement.
"These awards demonstrate the fund's investment and low-fee credentials," says Dunnin.
Peter Chun, UniSuper's CEO, says it aims to be the best financial decision its members ever make - at all life stages, including throughout retirement. "We know that every member's needs are different, which is why we think our pension products, combined with our award-winning advice offering, sets UniSuper apart."
A key factor that distinguishes UniSuper is that more than 70% of its funds under management are handled inhouse. "This gives us not only direct access to genuine investment talent within the organisation, but also enables us to be agile and jump on unique opportunities rapidly, all while keeping our fees low," says Chun.
Dunnin says UniSuper has sharp fees of around 0.6%pa, especially for retired members, and only narrowly missed winning the best value retirement product.
UniSuper's strong focus on environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) is another key to success with $12 billion invested in sustainably branded investment products at June 30, 2022.
"UniSuper's street cred and long-run commitment to doing the hard yards working as an ESG investment advocate - despite the friendly fire criticism it sometimes cops - also makes it a stand-out," says Dunnin.
Another point of difference is its financial advice.
"Our award-winning and highly price-competitive financial advice offering and our genuine care for members separate us from the competition," says Chun.
Product choice is something UniSuper is proud of, says Chun. That ranges from diversified investment options for members who prefer to be less hands-on and a range of specialist investment options for members who like to take a more active role in setting their strategy. Included in these are three sustainable and environmentally branded investment options that are unique to UniSuper.
While UniSuper's deep education heritage means that those from the higher education and research sectors are a big component of its membership, it has been open to all Australians for a little over a year.
Connecting with members is important to UniSuper.
"We try to offer our members connection to what we do, and through communication channels that best suit them," says Chun. "That can range from webcasts, investment update videos, podcasts, emails, social media and, of course, by traditional letters, too. I'm particularly excited that we've launched an app for our members that has been well received with very positive reviews."
"Winning Money magazine's Best Pension Fund award this year is a real acknowledgement of the positive impact we have for our members in retirement. I'm proud to lead a fund that is totally dedicated to these member outcomes."
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