Is Equip an industry fund?

Fund updates | | 2 min read



Thanks to a massive multi-million dollar advertising campaign run over more than a decade, the industry fund concept is pretty well understood. Generally, these funds have had lower fees and higher investment returns to members because they don’t have external shareholders. Basically, all the profits flow back to members.

Those claims have been validated by the recent Productivity Commission into the competitiveness of the superannuation industry. It found that industry funds had consistently outperformed retail funds. According to Rice Warner chief executive Michael Rice, retail funds provide a “relatively poor product offering compared to the large industry funds.”

So is Equip an Industry Fund?

The short answer is yes. The slightly longer answer is also yes – but we prefer to call ourselves a profit-to-member fund.

The reality is that the terms ‘industry fund’ and ‘profit-to-member fund’ mean broadly the same thing. Both are member focused, and have a history of delivering higher returns to members than their retail counterparts.

The difference between the two terms is mostly historical. For example, Equip was founded in 1931, and was originally a fund for public service employees of the State Electricity Commission of Victoria (SECV).

‘Industry funds’ evolved from the Hawke-Keating government’s industrial deal in 1980s , The Accord, as a partnership between trade unions and employers in specific industry sectors.

This table may help explain where Equip, as a profit-to-member fund, compares with industry and retail funds (often owned by banks):


 EquipIndustry fundsRetail
Low fees 



All investment earnings to members

(after fees and taxes)

Skills-based board appointmentsYes??
Pay external shareholdersNoNoYes
Service multiple industry sectorsYes?Yes
Feature the 'Industry fund' logoNoYesNo
Aligned with trade union movement NoYesNo


Equip has been helping Australian's retire better since 1931Read more about our history by clicking here.

Issued by Togethr Trustees Pty Ltd ABN 64 006 964 049, AFSL 246383 ("Togethr"), the trustee of the Equipsuper Superannuation Fund ABN 33 813 823 017 ("the Fund"). The information contained herein is general information only and does not take into account your personal financial situation or needs. You should consider whether this information is appropriate to your personal circumstances before acting on it and, if necessary, you should also seek professional financial advice tailored to your personal circumstances. Where tax information is included, you should consider obtaining personal taxation advice. Before making a decision to invest in the Equipsuper Superannuation Fund, you should read the appropriate Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Target Market Determination for the product which are available at  Financial advice services may be provided to members by the trustee’s related entity Togethr Financial Planning Pty Ltd (ABN 84 124 491 078; AFSL 455010). *Past performance is not an indication of future performance.

Join our award-winning fund

Plan for your future with the industry fund that works hard for you.

Join us