QSuper has confirmed its proposed partnership with Sunsuper may not result in a traditional merger.
Appearing before the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics on Thursday, QSuper chief executive Michael Pennisi fielded questions from Committee chair and Liberal MP Tim Wilson over the potential arrangement between the two Queensland funds.
Asked if QSuper was strictly seeking a merger with its Queensland counterpart, Pennisi was non-committal, and said the term he used to describe the potential relationship - a partnership - could result in a number of different outcomes.
"That could mean a merger, or it could mean some other arrangement," Pennisi said.
Wilson asked if an arrangement could amount to the two super funds pooling member savings to achieve scale benefits, and Pennisi replied it was one among a series of options available to the funds.
"Or joining together for operational efficiencies. There is a broad spectrum," Pennisi said.
"We are in preliminary discussions at the moment, they're at the very high level, and the fundamental question that our board - and I'm sure the Sunsuper board is going to have to be satisfied by - is whether this thing [a partnership between the two funds] is the best thing for our members?"
Despite a spate of mergers within the sector over the last 12 months, a partnership for operational efficiencies remains a distinct possibility, and would follow on the heels of the recently confirmed joint venture between Equipsuper and Catholic Super.
The joint venture allows the two funds to retain their branding, but combines their investment pools, administration and offices to ensure members spend less on fees.