Superannuation fund Spaceship Financial Services and its trustee, Tidswell Financial Services, have each been penalised by the corporate regulator for misleading marketing claims.
Both companies have been fined $12,600, with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) issuing infringement notices due to concerns it had over misleading claims about the “fundamental investment philosophy” of Spaceship’s ‘GrowthX’ portfolio on the fund’s website in 2017.
“The infringement notices were issued following concerns that promotional statements prioritised marketing over accurate disclosure,” ASIC said in a statement.
“Prospective members of the fund were told that: ‘We will fight to get you the very best assets in your portfolio…. We will measure companies in our portfolio based on their ability to provide defensibility of profits and high levels of product differentiation.’”
ASIC said its concern was that these statements mislead prospective members of the fund because at the time 79 per cent of the fund was invested in index-tracking funds, which involved no qualitative analysis of the underlying companies.
Spaceship and Tidswell have since removed the statements from the fund’s website.
Primarily targeting Millennials, Spaceship was launched in 2017, with Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes among the fund’s backers.