NZ Super hires recruiter to find new CEO

By Elizabeth Fry

New Zealand's sovereign wealth fund has hired a trans-Tasman executive search firm to help them identify the best person to replace Matt Whineray, who will leave at the end of the year.

The Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation, the manager of the NZ$60 billion NZ Super Fund, has appointed Johnson Partners to help the board identify a new chief executive.

After 15 years with NZ Super fund, Matt Whineray advised the board in May that he has decided to resign.

Johnson Partners' work for the Guardians will be led by the firm's NZ managing partner Simon Monks along with chief executive Jason Johnson.

Guardians chair Catherine Drayton said Johnson Partners' strong track record in Australia and New Zealand, its global connections.

Drayton said the emphasis it placed on cultural fit as an appointment criterion made it an ideal partner for the board.

"Appointing the CEO is one of the most important jobs a Board has," she added.

"I am confident Johnson Partners will help us to make the right choice from what we expect to be a very strong field of possible candidates."

Whineray will be working with the board to bed down several major initiatives which, with NZ Super expected to double in size to more than NZ$120 billion in the next decade, aim to set the Guardians up for the next phase in its evolution.

The sovereign wealth fund was recently recognised by Global SWF as the best-performing sovereign investor globally, over the last ten years.