Griffiths says it is important for super funds to ask the right questions of their TM managers. “You shouldn’t just focus on explicit costs…You should ask to see their track record, relative to their pre-trade estimates, over numerous periods such as a 5 year history.” “It is clear with these short term risk management exercises that there is a greater appetite for more transparency among Australian Superannuation funds.” The leading exemplar of the ‘pure’ asset manager-based transitions service in Australia is BlackRock Transition Management, which is said (not by them) to have transferred portfolios for The Future Fund, the ultimate ‘reference’ client on these shores. Liliana Colla leads the four-person team in Melbourne which forms part of a 19-person global team dedicated to transitions.

This has grown out of the buy-side dealing desk of the underlying funds management business. (This is a business which at near US$3 trillion will be the largest in the world once the purchase of Barclays Global Investors is finalised, creating what Colla calls “unprecedented” internal off-market crossing opportunities for transition clients – presumably the transition management teams of the two firms will also be combined.)

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