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Brash Takes Over At Huljich Wealth

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Don Brash
Don Brash

Wellington, March 4 NZPA - Huljich Wealth Management chairman Don Brash is taking over as managing director and chief investment officer of the company.

The former Reserve Bank governor said he was taking over from Peter Huljich, who had accepted responsibility for lapses at the company.

"In recent days, there have been a number of allegations about the way Huljich KiwiSaver Funds have been managed. Some of these allegations are unfair and some are untrue," Dr Brash said.

"But since I returned from overseas last week, the board has conducted a full review of our operations.

"It has become clear that the board has not been kept fully informed in a timely manner about certain transactions, and as a consequence Huljich Wealth Management has not lived up to the highest standards of transparency.

"Peter Huljich has accepted responsibility for these lapses and has tendered his resignation as managing director and chief investment officer. The independent directors are committed to following best business practice and accordingly have accepted that resignation," Dr Brash said.

He had agreed to become managing director and chief investment officer immediately, and an experienced director would be sought for the chairman's position.

"Mr Huljich will no longer be a member of the investment committee, but will continue to assist the company by taking responsibility for some areas of operational management in order to provide the necessary continuity," Dr Brash said.

Dr Brash gave an assurance to the 70,000 people who had invested in the company's KiwiSaver funds that "we continue to be absolutely committed to protecting their savings, and growing them in a careful and responsible way".

Dr Brash has taken an indefinite leave of absence from the board of the ANZ National Bank.

As part of a Securities Commission probe, Huljich Wealth Management rewrote its investor statements for retirement fund returns after previous returns did not show Mr Huljich had made two payments totalling $150,000 in periods ending March 2008 and March 2009 as compensation for investment decisions he made.

Mr Huljich previously said he felt morally responsible for the investment decisions and there was no intention of boosting the funds' performance, and said they made no difference to performance ranking of the company's KiwiSaver scheme.

He is being replaced on the company's board by Chris Huljich.

Trustees Executors Superannuation, the trustee for the Huljich KiwiSaver Scheme, today said the governance and personnel changes at Huljich Wealth Management cleared the way for a fresh approach.

"As trustee, we have at various times over the past two years worked to resolve a number of issues that arose with the management of the scheme," Trustees Executors spokesman Clynton Hardy said.

"The trustee has worked behind the scenes for the benefit of members to ensure that the terms of the offer are adhered to.

"Having just had to issue a new prospectus to resolve the 2008 and 2009 instances of non-disclosure, we were satisfied that all outstanding issues of potential concern to members had been rectified and disclosed."

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