Michelle GriffithsThe $1 billion AvSuper industry fund is using a former consulting boss to conduct an asset consulting review, as it considers how to redeploy 25 per cent of its global equity allocation pulled from the AllianceBernstein Global Style Blend product.

The fund, which was originally set up for employees of Airservices Australia but is now public offer, has used Russell Investments as asset consultant since October 2004. 

AvSuper’s chief executive, Michelle Griffiths, said former Intech executive director Brett Elvish, now running a consultancy called Financial Viewpoint, was conducting a benchmarking exercise across all asset consultants in the marketplace.

“We want to compare Russell against what else is out there, to ensure the quality and depth of our consulting service remains optimal,” Griffiths said.

Griffiths said the fund had enjoyed a “very constructive relationship” with Russell and that the consultant had indicated its wish to renew the consulting contract, which has previously been subject to an internally-run review process every two years. Jim Franks is the principal consultant to the fund.

Meanwhile, AvSuper is still deciding how to reallocate 25 per cent of its global equities portfolio, which was rescinded from the AllianceBernstein Global Style Blend earlier this year. That combination of the Axa-owned manager’s growth and value divisions has been the worst performing ‘core’ global equity option in the Mercer performance survey over the five years to March 31, losing 3.5 per cent before fees/tax against a 1.8 per cent deficit for the MSCI World (ex-Australia). Its institutional client base here has shrunk dramatically as a result.

Griffiths said the rescinded monies had been equitised while replacement managers were considered, with Mellon Transition Management handling the transition.

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