LGIAsuper appoints new CIO ahead of Suncorp super acquisition

Mark Rider will take over as CIO of LGIAsuper and Energy Super in February after Troy Rieck leaves to take on a new role elsewhere.

The recently merged LGIAsuper and Energy Super have appointed a new chief investment officer, ahead of the planned acquisition of the superannuation business of Australian financial services giant Suncorp.

Mark Rider will take on the role of CIO at the combined entity in February 2022, which had approximately A$24 billion ($17.3 billion; €15.2 billion) in assets under management on June 30, 2021. Rider most recently served as CIO of Christian Super and held roles at the Reserve Bank of Australia and UBS, as well as the position of CIO for wealth and private banking at ANZ.

Rider takes over from Troy Rieck, who had held the CIO role since September 2019 and will depart in January. LGIAsuper was not able to provide information on Rieck’s next role. He previously worked in investment roles at Suncorp in two separate stints

LGIAsuper announced in April 2021 that it would acquire Suncorp’s superannuation business for approximately A$45 million this year, including a fixed amount of A$26.6 million plus regulatory reserves. The deal will take the combined fund to around A$28 billion of AUM.

LGIAsuper confirmed the acquisition was on track to reach financial close in the second half of this financial year, which ends on June 30 in Australia.

“This acquisition, combined with the Energy Super merger, will ultimately deliver all of our members an ideal, sustainable fund size, while maintaining our status as a boutique and personal superannuation provider,” CEO Kate Farrar said in a statement. Farrar added that the amalgamation of the funds would give LGIAsuper “a unique opportunity to reconfigure our investments to ensure that we are delivering the best possible outcomes and future security for our members.”

The fund intends to keep the Suncorp funds operating as a standalone entity under its existing branding initially, with its own trustee board, management and team. LGIAsuper and Energy Super still exist as separate brands but operate as a single fund that is managed by the LGIAsuper trustee.

According to its 2021 annual report, the most recent available and covering finances prior to the completion of the merger with Energy Super, LGIAsuper had around 1 percent of its AUM allocated to agriculture fund managers, amounting to approximately A$190 million.

Its commitments include A$72 million invested in US-based Equilibrium Capital’s Controlled Environment Foods Fund I, A$79 million in Folium Capital’s Agriculture Fund and A$39 million in Folium Timber Fund I.

It also holds a stake in Regional Livestock Exchanges, a network of seven livestock exchange facilities across Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria, through its investment in Palisade Investment PartnersDiversified Infrastructure Fund. The fund sold a portfolio of agricultural assets and water to Pitt Capital Partners, a subsidiary of Australian Securities Exchange-listed investment firm Washington H Soul Pattinson, for approximately A$100 million in mid-2019.

Energy Super’s 2021 annual report, also the final one prior to the merger, does not set out any commitments to agriculture fund managers.