5 ways AustralianSuper has delivered for members in 2020/21

28 October 2021

AustralianSuper’s FY21 annual report celebrates an extraordinary year for the Fund. Find out how AustralianSuper continued to deliver in members’ best financial interests in collaboration with our partners and inspire confidence as a supporter of the Australian economy and economic recovery.

The Annual Report 2021 gives insight into AustralianSuper’s investment activity and outcomes, operations, and financial position for the 12-month period to 30 June 2021. It demonstrates our commitment to helping all members achieve their best financial position in retirement.


Top 5 member focuses

1. Strong long-term performance

Financial year 2021 was an extraordinary year for returns for members with the Balanced option achieving outstanding performance of 20.43%. This is the highest financial year return in the Balanced option’s history.

The Fund was ranked as the leading super fund for 7, 10, 15 and 20 years.2  

The key driver of performance for the Balanced option was our focus on assets expected to deliver high growth, specifically with larger investment in listed shares and private equity, and less investment in assets more likely to be stable (defensive assets). The performance of our Australian and international shares portfolios contributed strongly, but drivers of performance were broad coming from most areas of the portfolio, which was well positioned by the investments team to benefit from the market recovery.             

For more performance highlights download the Annual Report 

‘Strong long-term investment performance is not about timing the market,’ says Chief Investment Officer Mark Delaney. ‘It’s about selecting the right mix of investments for the portfolio and then investing in assets and companies that have the characteristics to create long-term value.’

2. Focus on responsible investment 

We believe well governed investments with good environmental, social and governance (ESG) management delivers better long-term returns for members. By using our size and scale we can deliver strong long-term returns for members, while having a positive impact on ESG issues globally.

Our ESG & Stewardship program comprises is made up of 3 core pillars:

  • Integration: Assessing and integrating ESG risks and value drivers when choosing and managing investments.
  • Stewardship: Exercising our rights and responsibilities as a shareholder to influence and improve ESG practices in companies which drive long-term value.
  • Choice: Considering members’ values in the investment choices we offer.

AustralianSuper is globally recognised as a Responsible Investment leader with an A+ rating3 on its Overarching Approach to Responsible Investment Strategy and Governance and Listed Equity-Active Ownership by the UN’s Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). We’re also recognised as a Responsible Investment Leader by the Responsible Investment Association Australasia (RIAA) across both the super fund and asset manager studies.

AustralianSuper is globally recognised as a Responsible Investment Leader with an A+ rating.

3. Providing financial advice members can trust

In the year to 30 June 2021 almost 20,000 members contacted the Fund for help and advice. This was an increase of approximately 19% on the previous year, reflecting the continued demand caused by the pandemic.

Of these members more than 7200 received a personalised Statement of Advice helping them towards their financial goals with over 5400 receiving written general advice guides on retirement options, account consolidation and super health checks.



AustralianSuper members can access a range of member education services – from online interactive webinars through to workplace education. Find a webinar today.

4. Insurance which delivers and provides members with peace of mind 

AustralianSuper provides most members with basic insurance cover with their super account. This cover provides a basic level of protection if you die or become ill or injured. AustralianSuper’s insurer TAL has among the highest claim admittance rates, the quickest approval times and the lowest dispute rates in the industry for the year to December 2020, based on the ASIC Moneysmart claims comparison tool. 

This year, the Fund assisted 2,881 members in lodging claims with return to work support (income protection).

AustralianSuper makes no profit from providing insurance to members. This is one of the most cost-effective ways for members to access the benefits of insurance.


5. Investing your super in Australia to deliver strong returns

The investment team have worked hard over FY 21 to bring the management of Australian assets in-house. We have over $53 billion of members’ super invested in Australian companies and equities.

During FY21 we completed bringing in-house the management of our Australian equities’ portfolio. We now have over $53 billion invested in Australian companies. Since the start of COVID-19, we’ve actively engaged with our Australian portfolio companies to understand how they are navigating the impacts of the pandemic on their businesses and support them as they manage these impacts and prepare their businesses for future growth.

During the pandemic we’ve supported more than 50 ASX-listed companies by investing over $1 billion in their capital raisings. We also continued to support emerging Australian companies by expanding our micro-cap portfolio.



A focus on the future

In October 2021 the Fund farewelled chief executive Ian Silk following 15 years at the helm and welcomed Paul Schroder to lead the next period of global expansion. Mr Schroder said the Board’s decision to appoint him as Chief Executive was a great honour and one that brought great responsibility but also huge opportunity.  

‘Serving members and helping build their retirement balances is central to our purpose and ingrained in our culture. I look forward to working with my colleagues and key stakeholders to continue to deliver on that vision,’ says Paul.

AustralianSuper is Australia’s largest super fund, with over 2.3 million members. We're focused on delivering on our purpose to help members achieve their best financial position in retirement.

The Fund is focused on its next phase, to move towards being a profit-for-member $500 billion superannuation fund in the next 5 years, that uses the scale of the organisation to benefit members. 



1. AustralianSuper data: 1987 – 2021 returns. Returns from equivalent investment options of the ARF and STA super funds are used in calculating returns for periods that begin before 1 July 2006.
2. Based on the AustralianSuper Balanced investment option compared to the SuperRatings Fund Crediting Rate Survey — SR50 Balanced (60–76) Index, periods to 31 July 2021. Returns from equivalent investment options of the ARF and STA super funds are used in calculating returns for periods that begin before 1 July 2006. Investment returns are not guaranteed. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.
3. A+ Overarching Approach to Responsible Investment Strategy and Governance and Listed Equity-Active Ownership. UN Principles of Responsible Investing 2020.
Investment returns are not guaranteed. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.

This may include general financial advice which doesn’t take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Before making a decision consider if the information is right for you and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement, available at australiansuper.com/pds or by calling 1300 300 273. A Target Market Determination (TMD) is a document that outlines the target market a product has been designed for. Find the TMDs at australiansuper.com/TMD.

AustralianSuper Pty Ltd ABN 94 006 457 987, AFSL 233788, Trustee of AustralianSuper ABN 65 714 394 898. 

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