NZ Super sells fund stakes

The fund stake sales contributed to the drop in the pension's exposure to private equity from 6 percent in February to 5 percent at the end of March.

NZ Super Fund has sold stakes in three of its offshore alternative funds valued at NZ$105 million ($73 million; €65 million) to an undisclosed buyer, as it focuses on “fewer and deeper” external manager and advisor relationships.

The superannuation fund sold interests in buyout fund Hellman & Friedman VII, growth equity fund JMI Equity Fund VII and HIG Bayside Loan Opportunities Fund II, a mezzanine debt vehicle, Secondaries Investor reports. According to the fund’s 2015 annual report, those stakes were worth NZ$34 million, NZ$34 million and NZ$37 million, respectively, as of 30 June.

“These investments were some of the smaller ones in the fund and the move to sell them is consistent with our strategy to have fewer, deeper relationships with our investment managers,” Fiona Mackenzie, head of investments for the fund, said in a statement.

“It is also pleasing to be able to realise gains from a part of the fund’s portfolio that has performed strongly in recent years.”

Proceeds from the sale would be invested in its Reference Portfolio, a low-cost, passive portfolio of listed stocks, NZ Super said, without disclosing the sale price or name of the buyer.

The three stakes accounted for 0.3 percent of the superfund’s overall portfolio, it said.

All three funds are US-based and invest in a range of sectors including software and healthcare IT, media, financial and professional services and distressed debt.

This is not the first time the fund has sold private equity interests. In 2014, it sold its NZ$7 million stake in Astorg V FCPR and NZ$46 million stake in Apax Europe VII on the secondaries market.

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