Milford KiwiSaver Review

Milford employs an active investment management strategy for its six KiwiSaver funds, which are spread across various risk levels, from the lower-risk cash fund to the higher-risk aggressive fund. This strategy allows Milford to capitalise on investment opportunities as they arise while also managing risk. Milford integrates ESG analysis and negative screening to ensure sustainable investments.


  • Online App
  • High returns


  • High Fees

Milford KiwiSaver Quick Facts

  1. Fund start date: 01 October 2007
  2. Assets Under Management (AUM): $7.38B (31 December 2023) vs. $6.9B (30 September 2023)
  3. Customers: 83,000 
  4. Awards: Morningstar Overall New Zealand Fund Manager of the Year – 2021, 2022, 2023

Milford KiwiSaver Funds rank fifth with $7.38 billion in assets under management in New Zealand, up $480.9 million from the October quarter, compared to ANZ KiwiSaver which decreased by $839 million.

Milford KiwiSaver is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Milford Asset Management Limited.

It has a strong track record of performance, as evidenced by Morningstar New Zealand Overall Fund Manager of the Year Awards 2021, 2022, and 2023.

In addition, Milford has managed New Zealand’s top-performing KiwiSaver Growth, Balanced, and Conservative Funds for the past ten years.

Milford Asset Management is a New Zealand investment firm that provides KiwiSaver funds, managed investment funds, and wealth management and has $20.5 billion in assets under management.

How are Milford KiwiSaver Funds Performing?

Yearly annual returns after fees but before tax for the last three or five years, except for the High Growth Fund reflecting the return since launched in August 2023.

  • NZ Cash Funds Total Returns % per year: 2.26%*
  • Conservative Fund 5-year Total Returns per year: 3.90%
  • Moderate Fund 3-year Total Returns % per year: 2.90%*
  • Balanced Fund 5-year Total Returns % per year: 8.30%
  • Active Growth Fund 5-year Total Returns % per year: 10.60%
  • Aggressive Fund 3-year Total Return % per year: 6.04%*

The Milford KiwiSaver funds have different investment strategies, and their performance is measured based on different time frames.

Three years investment performance:

  • KiwiSaver Aggressive Fund,
  • KiwiSaver Cash Fund and
  • KiwiSaver Moderate Fund

Five years of investment performance:

  • KiwiSaver Conservative Fund,
  • KiwiSaver Balanced Fund and
  • KiwiSaver Active Growth Fund

This information can be helpful for investors who are looking to choose the right KiwiSaver fund based on their investment goals, risk and retirement plans.

The Milford team invests its money alongside yours, so it is highly motivated to ensure your funds perform at their best.

Milford believes that investment markets are constantly changing, and therefore, they believe that an active approach to investing is in the best interest of their clients. This approach enables Milford to seize investment opportunities as they arise and manage risks along the way, ensuring that their client’s interests are well looked after.

The returns reflect past performance but do not indicate or guarantee future performance because they are subject to market volatility, moving up and down. It is important to note that returns can be negative, and as a result, you may receive back less than your total contributions.

How do Milford KiwiSaver Funds compare?

Based on past performance alone, Milford, in competition with Generate KiwiSaver, has continuously performed higher than the average KiwiSaver fund after fees and taxes for the past ten years.

  • Milford Conservative: 6.0%
  • Generate Moderate: 5.5%
  • Milford Balanced: 9.0%
  • Milford Growth: 10.9%
  • Generate Focused Growth: 9.4%

Milford charges annual fees ranging from 0.20% to 1.15% for its Moderate, Balanced and Active Growth Funds. In addition, there is a performance fee ranging from 0.01% to 0.15%. Switching between different funds within the scheme is free. You won’t be charged any joining or exit fees if you transfer your KiwiSaver to another provider.

How can Milford KiwiSaver Funds be invested?

Milford KiwiSaver invests in two categories:

  • Growth Assets (equities and listed property) and
  • Income Assets (cash, cash equivalents, and fixed interest)

They can also invest limitedly in listed infrastructure and alternative assets.

Milford KiwiSaver Balanced Fund is a diversified fund that aims to provide capital growth over the minimum recommended investment timeframe of five years. It invests primarily in equities but has a significant allocation to fixed-interest securities.

The Balanced Fund has a target investment mix of 40% Growth Assets and 60% Income Assets:

  • Cash and Cash Equivalents 9%
  • NZ & International Fixed Interest 15%
  • International Fixed Interest 36%
  • Australasian Equities 15%
  • International Equities 19%
  • Listed Property 6%

Milford KiwiSaver Aggressive Fund recommends a ten-year minimum investment timeframe and primarily invests in international equities, with a moderate allocation to Australasian equities.

The Aggressive Fund’s targeted investment mix is 95% Growth Assets and 5% Income Assets:

  • Cash and Cash Equivalents 5%
  • Australasian Equities 25%
  • International Equities 70%

Overall, the High Growth Fund’s 95% allocation to growth assets is likely to give investors higher long-term returns but more volatility (periods of unpredictable and occasionally rapid, price swings) in the short to medium term than the Balanced 40%.

Milford KiwiSaver FAQ's

Milford Funds Limited, a Milford Assets Management Limited subsidiary, owns Milford KiwiSaver.

The Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director is Mark Ryland.
Shareholders in Milford Assets Management Ltd are mainly from New Zealand and Australia, with the top 3 shareholders owning over 75% of the shares.

  • Mitre Peak Nominee 1 Limited owns 817118 shares or 38.93%
  • Anna Joan Gibbons owns 533093 shares or 25.40%
  • Amtex Corporation Limited owns 232514 shares or 11.08%

The Milford KiwiSaver funds can be withdrawn when you turn 65, which is when you become eligible for New Zealand superannuation.

It’s possible to withdraw money from your KiwiSaver account before retirement under certain circumstances. You’re allowed to make a withdrawal if:

  • you purchase your first home,
  • permanently move to another country,
  • face significant financial hardship,
  • suffer from a severe illness or
  • were born with a life-shortening condition that reduces your life expectancy below the KiwiSaver retirement age.

In case of your premature death, the money in your KiwiSaver account will be paid to your estate.

Milford has over 180 passionate and talented individuals across Auckland, Cambridge, Tauranga, Wellington, Christchurch, Wanaka, and Australia offices.

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