AMP Financial Services’ merger with AXA Australia saw it claim the greatest market share in 2011, as AustralianSuper reaped the highest net inflows from its expanding membership, analysis by research firm Tria Investment Partners shows.

Mergers were the strongest force for superannuation fund growth in 2011, enabling AMP Financial Services to claim 5.1-per-cent market share through its acquisition of AXA Australia, according to the 2011-2012 Super Funds Review published Tria, an investment industry researcher. The $43-billion AustralianSuper was the only industry fund among the largest five superannuation businesses following its merger with the $3.3-billion Westscheme (see figure 1).


Figure 1. Market share of the five largest superannuation funds in 2011

Fund Size Market share
AMP Financial Services $68 billion 5.1%
MLC $59.8 billion 4.46%
BT Financial Group $58.2 billion 4.39%
Colonial First State $54.3 billion 4.09%
AustralianSuper $43 billion 3.2%

Source: Tria Investment Partners


AustralianSuper also gained more net superannuation payments from members than any other fund. The Melbourne-based fund reaped $4.2 billion in net inflows in 2011, compared with $3.1 billion in 2010.

“Consolidation is very important. Mergers and acquisitions have really reshaped the playing field,” says Andrew Baker, managing partner at Sydney-based Tria. “But underlying growth is a different story.”

Netwealth, a Melbourne-based retail superannuation business, climbed furthest in the market share rankings, jumping from 85 to 73. Its assets grew by 37.4 per cent to reach $1.3 billion in 2011, the Tria report shows.


Rich inflows

AustralianSuper’s net inflows as a percentage of its assets was 11.3 per cent, making it the fastest growing top-20 ranked fund in the absence of merger activity, the Tria report, which assesses the competitiveness of funds with collective memberships, shows. Other top-20 funds with strong net inflows as a percentage of assets include the $30-billion First State Super, which is completing its merger with the $6-billion Health Super, and the $30-billion fund for Queensland government workers, QSuper, whose members commit as much as 17.5 per cent of their salaries to the fund, the $20-billion REST Industry Super, $12-billion GESB, $9.9-billion Hostplus, $19-billion Sunsuper and $9-billion VicSuper (see figure 2).


Figure 2. Superannuation funds with high net contributions


Net contributions as % of fund assets
AustralianSuper 11.3 per cent
First State Super 9.9 per cent
QSuper 8 per cent
Colonial First State 5.4 per cent
BT Financial Group 4.9 per cent

Source: Tria Investment Partners


Simon Mumme became a fnancial journalist through a stroke of luck. Upon graduating with a Master of Journalism from The University of Queensland in 2006, he set out to fnd a news organisation that would employ him as an overseas correspondent or business reporter. Or both, ideally. Conexus Financial hired the bright-eyed cadet, and in the ensuing years he wrote for all of its titles until being appointed editor of Investment Magazine in June 2010. Under his guidance, the magazine continues to dominate the Australian institutional investment media through its authoritative, insightful and engaging feature stories and analysis. Outside of work, Simon trains keenly in Muay Thai kickboxing, revels in the surf breaks fringing the Sydney coastline and reads as much high-quality journalism and non-fiction writing as he can. Committed to his role as a niche business reporter, Simon is aware that an overseas posting as a correspondent still eludes him. He hopes Conexus can help him with that career goal too.
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