IFM offers investors fee rebate

The Australian asset manager is returning the equivalent of 12.5% of annual fees to its global investors. The rebate will apply to ‘base management fees, calculated on funds under management at the end of October’ and be paid to investors on December 1.

Australia-based Industry Funds Management (IFM), an asset manager owned by 35 superannuation funds, has announced that it will offer a fee rebate to its global investor base, to be paid in cash on December 1.

The rebate will equate to 12.5 percent of annual fees, “calculated on funds under management at the end of October,” IFM explained in a statement.

“IFM has a genuine motivation to act in the best interests of investors and today’s announcement confirms that intent with further action,” IFM chief executive Brett Himbury stated. “We’re able to provide this rebate because of our unique ownership structure and culture backed by our strong financial position.” He added:

“While other fund managers are looking to preserve their margins in an extremely challenging market, IFM is emerging as a leading provider of net benefit returns to institutional investors. We want to send a very clear message to our investors and indeed our competitors, that we are determined to set world class standards that genuinely put investors first.”

In related news, IFM recently launched a print- and television-based promotional push in Australia extolling the benefits of superannuation investments in infrastructure and calling on the federal government to support infrastructure investment. The campaign is touting performance data from IFM Australia Infrastructure Fund, which returned 12.48 percent each year beginning in 1995.

IFM Australia Infrastructure Fund – a flagship IFM offering – is an investment vehicle focused on energy, infrastructure, transportation as well as waste and water.

Retirement in Australia, called superannuation, is in need of uncorrelated investment returns, IFM maintained in its campaign. Infrastructure can provide a “solid, secure” return, but also fuel nation-building.

Both the government and industry have sought to enable wider investment in infrastructure. The Department of Treasury, charged with economic development in Australia, has put forth a plan to make investing in infrastructure more tax efficient.

Infrastructure Australia, a lobby group, has stressed a countrywide paucity in potential investment. Despite a dire assessment of infrastructure, Australia is still well-regarded as an industry hotbed.

In addition to IFM, Access Capital, Macquarie Group and Queensland Investment Corporation hail from Down Under.

* Bruno Alves contributed reporting for this story.