Eventually we realised that 25 per cent of all new contributions went as a fee to the life company, it was truly outrageous.” The clerks were laughed out of the room when they tried to negotiate a lower commission, so Fry says they froze the contributions and set the wheels in motion for the creation of a not-for-profit super vehicle, Tasplan. As a trustee, Fry makes no bones about Tasplan’s support of Tasmanian property and private equity investment. “If we support the Tasmanian economy, we grow employment here to the benefit of the fund and all its members,” he declares.
Fry called his Trustee of the Year gong “an award for Tasplan”. In a neat co-incidence, we talked to him the same day that one of those old life companies he refers to, AMP, launched a no-commission, low cost super product for Gen X and Y-ers. You’d have to credit Fry with creating some of the competitive pressure that led to such a thing. The Trustee of the Year prize is more than kudos, by the way. A rather snazzy plate was delivered to Tasplan’s Hobart offices last month, while Fry and co-winner Bill Watton (Vision Super/VicSuper) receive a scholarship to attend CMSF’s Global Dialogue study tour to Hong Kong in 2010.