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Supporting A Step-change In Scale For Smartshares

Chapman Tripp advised Smartshares Limited on the purchase of the management rights of the ASB Superannuation Master Trust from ASB Group Investments Limited.

The acquisition of the manager role in respect of $1.8b of funds under management (for more than 17,500 members across more than 100 employer groups) held in the ASB Superannuation Master Trust, takes Smartshares’ managed funds to over $8b, and builds on Smartshares’ successful appointment as a default KiwiSaver scheme provider.

Chapman Tripp’s financial services regulatory experts, partner Tim Williams and special counsel Emma Dale, acted for Smartshares on the transaction and provided day-to-day legal support throughout the acquisition process.

Williams says, “This was a complicated and significant transaction, which involved all the elements of a traditional business purchase, along with addressing a range of regulatory compliance issues, and contracting the former manager to perform investment management and administration services until they are transitioned over the next several years.”

In an announcement last week, NZX stated that the acquisition through Smartshares (its wholly-owned subsidiary) represents a step-change in scale for their passive funds management business and is aligned with their strategy to capture complementary opportunities across its funds management, wealth technologies and markets businesses.

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The transaction lifted Smartshares to a close second in the employer superannuation market.

Smartshares Chief Executive Officer Hugh Stevens said, ”Smartshares found that Chapman Tripp’s combination of expertise in M&A and in fund management law was the ideal combination that brought success in this transaction. We were impressed with the energy, technical knowledge and commercial insight brought to the table by Tim and Emma and the wider team.”

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