How size and scale serve the public purpose community


At IPAA Queensland’s recent Chief Executives and Emerging Leaders Breakfast, held on 20 April 2023, the CEO of Australian Retirement Trust (ART), Bern Reilly took to the stage to share insights and details on how the recent merger of Sunsuper and QSuper is serving the financial futures of public purpose members.

Twelve short months on from the merger, ART is now one of Australia’s largest superannuation institutions, being responsible for managing $240 billion in retirement savings for 2.2. million members.  It is now ranked in the top 25 sovereign pension funds worldwide)… something that IPAA Queensland President and Director-General of the Department of Child Safety, Seniors and Disability Services Deidre Mulkerin confirmed was indeed an important consideration not only for her as she approaches retirement (with a touch of jest!), but also for all who work in the public purpose sector.

Bern Reilly said QSuper and the Queensland Government had a deep and lasting partnership, and that ART valued the ongoing relationship and looked forward to continuing to strengthen it.

While we’ve just celebrated our first birthday as ART, we’re proud the Queensland Government has trusted us to look after the retirement savings of its employees and their families for over 100 years,” Mr Reilly said.

Across Mr Reilly’s address, he spoke to the opportunities available to public purpose workers at every stage of their career as to what benefits ART’s size and scale now offers, including:

  • being able to access bigger, better and lower cost investments, that simply wouldn’t be available to QSuper and Sunsuper as smaller, separate funds
  • better serving members by delivering operational efficiencies
  • utilising ART’s size and market position to offer new and improved member product offerings and services to ensure the fund continued to meet the needs of its members.

These benefits, in addition to the important features of education, guidance, and advice were also important in helping members get the most out of their super.

ART’s support of IPAA Queensland’s flagship breakfast event entered its fourth year in 2023, and with a focus on supporting the financial security of its members, it also continues to support the leadership and capability building of the public purpose community.

“It’s gratifying to be able to support the people, who keep Queensland running, to and through their retirement.”

Mr Reilly said the panel’s discussion on key workforce trends and the challenges of the inter-generational shift taking place underlined how people powered an organisation’s success.

When I reflect on the last 12 months, it’s clear our people were critical to the merger’s success. Bringing our 2,700 people together as ART was always going to be challenging but doing it against the backdrop of flooding, the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, was one of my proudest moments as a leader.”

Mr Reilly said leaders could leave a legacy by guiding, nurturing, and helping others grow to become the best leaders they could be, a sentiment echoed by public purpose leaders shared through several IPAA Queensland events.

“That’s why we’ve been working closely with the Queensland Government to help members understand the new super contributions changes that are designed to make super simpler and more flexible.”

It is through the valued support of organisations such as ART, that IPAA Queensland is in a position to share insights and intelligence through a compelling and challenging events program.  We invite the broader public purpose community and ART members to connect and engage with IPAA Queensland.


We thank our major partner QSuper and our event sponsors KPMG and OnTalent for their support.