The $1 billion Prime Super has recruited an internal investment resource from Media Super while renewing a contract with its administrator, Pillar, despite it being up for sale by the NSW Government.

Prime has signed a three-year contract, which became effective January 1, with the NSW government-owned superannuation administrator, Pillar Administration, which was put on the market in late 2008.

“It’s a risk,” Lachlan Baird, chief executive officer of the fund, said, referring to the possibility of Pillar being sold during the term of the contract. However, “by the time any decision is made, and we find out who the [acquiring] company is, we will be in a position to review”.

“Since the early days, [the NSW government] has been heading down the privatisation route; it’s not a surprise to anybody.”

The fund for workers in the agricultural and seafood industries also appointed Caroline Lee, formerly with Media Super, as general manager, finance and investments. She will work with Baird and Prime’s asset consultant, Access Capital Advisors, to research managers and implement the fund’s investment strategy, and also apply her accounting experience to administrative work with Pillar. Lee begins in the role next week.

Her role replaces, to some extent, former investment administration manager Toni Scicluna, who conducted some work on investments but was primarily responsible for administrative tasks.  

Prime has also elected a new chairman for the first time since its inception in 1996. Barry Cochran, previously a trustee director, replaced James Ferguson in the role in October 2008. Baird said the change was “a matter of rotation”.

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