Annual Report 2022

Trustee for the construction industry Long Service Leave Fund


The portable Construction Industry Long Service Leave Scheme has supported the Victorian Construction Industry for more than 44 years. Formerly under the statutory authority banner of the Building Industry Long Service Leave Board, the Scheme adopted the name CoINVEST in 1992 and later privatised on 1 December 1997 to become CoINVEST Limited as Trustee for the Construction Industry Long Service Leave Fund. The purpose of the Fund is to provide employee workers within the Construction Industry with the benefit of long service leave and address the challenges related to the short-term project based employment nature of construction.


Long service leave provides a critical opportunity for workers to rest and recuperate within an industry that has disproportionately high rates of physical and mental stress. This support contributes to the ongoing wellbeing of an Industry that represents more than 200,000 employees and their families, and contributes $21.6b to the Victorian economy.

All members who carry out construction work in Victoria, including employers, directors, subcontractors, workers and apprentices are required by law to be registered with CoINVEST and comply with the Rules of the Scheme. The CoINVEST Scheme is funded on a contribution model; employers in the industry are required to make a quarterly contribution proportionate to the size of their payroll. Currently, this is 2.7% of the total gross wages of their workers conducting covered activities. In this way, every employer, no matter how large or small, pays their fair share. CoINVEST has supported employees in the industry paying more than $1.75 billion in long service leave claims since the Scheme began in 1976.



to be the best operator of a portable entitlements scheme

CoINVEST's purpose

to support and protect the long-term wellbeing of construction workers and the vitality of the construction industry

Key Highlights

Let’s take a look at some of the highlights of the CoINVEST portable long service leave scheme over the 2021/2022 financial year.

Membership Highlights


Calls taken


Emails received


Claims paid

6.6 days

Average claim processing


New Employers registered


Active Employers registered


New Worker members registered


Average claim payment


Contributions collected and processed


Average quarterly contribution per Worker


Active worker members


Total Worker members with LSL entitlement

Vaccination Program Support

In 2020, CoINVEST provided support to Incolink to bring the COVID-19 testing bus to construction sites around Victoria. This successful initiative helped the industry to remain open and keep site workers and their families safe.

In 2021 Victoria had a new set of challenges with new variant strains of COVID-19. CoINVEST was again proud to help fund and support industry initiatives to ensure the safety and prosperity of construction workers and their families. 

Master Builders Association Victoria (MBAV) and Incolink received CoINVEST’s support for their campaigns to ‘Get The Jab Done’ via voluntary vaccination programs at sites and hubs around Victoria.

From the success of the initial pilot program in September 2021, Incolink expanded the scheme to include booster shots in 2022 via their on-site delivery program.

Expanded Executive Team and Organisational Structure

In the second half of 2022, we welcomed four new team members in executive positions: 

–  David Lang as General Manager, Technology and Innovation

–  Darren McConnell as Chief Finance and Investment Officer

–  Catryn Tuckwell as General Counsel, Legal and Compliance

–  Carly Hendon as General Manager, People and Culture

CoINVEST’s improved organisational structure has been designed to encompass a ‘whole of business’ approach in the way we support the business and deliver our services.  This structure is supported by the Executive Team to ensure that the organisation is meeting its strategic goals in providing a great experience for members.

Investment Strategy Review

Our investment advisors, Willis Towers Watson, commenced their Investment Strategy Review and Asset Liability Modelling on behalf of CoINVEST.

The review enabled CoINVEST to analyse and determine a reasonable level of investment risk exposure, considering its current and future expected liabilities and contribution rates.

It aimed to present a number of alternative portfolios for CoINVEST to consider adopting for the Fund’s new strategic asset allocations, as well as helping to derive an appropriate investment target return, strategic asset allocation and target funding ratio.

Vision, Purpose and Strategic Direction

Over the year,  CoINVEST conducted several strategic workshops to define a new Vision, Purpose and Strategic Direction that will phase the delivery of key milestones to uplift our member experience, improve our systems, processes and governance, focus on our people and culture and ensure that the Fund is being responsibly managed.

CoINVEST’s vision is to be the best independent operator of a portable entitlement scheme, with a clear purpose of supporting and protecting the long term wellbeing of construction workers and the vitality of the construction industry.  CoINVEST plays a crucial and important role in:

 • Promoting and enabling the wellbeing of construction workers by providing portability of their long service leave entitlements.

 • Supporting the physical and mental health and wellbeing of members by creating a more secure, long term financial future.

 • Attracting and keeping people in the industry for longer, by ensuring they can regularly rest and rejuvenate from physically taxing work.

Chair and CEO Review

Jenny Acton and Craig Bell

chair of the board and chief executive officer, coinvest lIMItEd

Just as we are seeing the world recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been additional international and local challenges that have impacted our industry, cost of living and many Australian households.  Internationally, the impacts of the war in Ukraine and economic instability in the USA and UK have all contributed to less than favourable market conditions for global investments that have had an adverse impact on the Construction Industry Long Service Leave Fund’s (the Fund) return in FY2022.  

The measures taken by the Victorian Government and the Industry to keep construction going throughout multiple lockdowns have been welcome. However, the impact of fixed price contracts in place prior to the pandemic, the rising cost of goods and shortages of supply, along with labour shortages and worker wellbeing, continue to be challenges for the industry.  

Nonetheless, the significant backlog of residential work and a large major project pipeline, mean total building activity is forecast to grow over FY2023. Supporting our employer members through this period, ensuring our worker members remain employed and working subcontractors remain engaged, and the construction industry continues to function will be vital.

CoINVEST is here to protect workers’ and working subcontractors’ right to long service leave and to support them to take the time to rest and rejuvenate using that leave. Over FY2022, we paid 15,630 long service leave claims, up 35% on FY2021, mainly due to borders and travel restrictions easing. The operational improvements made to claim automation enabled CoINVEST to approve 50% of claims on the day of application. We also saw our active members increase to 259,610. Contributions received from our 23,630 active employer members were $224m, up 9.7%, and Benefits paid to worker members were $159m, up 37%.

Due to the aforementioned volatility, the Fund posted a loss of 3.64%, its first loss since the Global Financial Crisis.  It is important to note that the Fund has a long-term investment objective and over the ten-year period ending June 2022, the Fund’s average annual return was 8.83%, some 2.53% higher than its average annual return objective of 6.3%. 

The first half of the last financial year was relatively stable, however the second half saw the impact of global disruption and its effect on both world and local economies, with stressors such as investment volatility, inflationary pressure, supply chain challenges and economic uncertainty.  These had an impact on most of our asset classes, with negative performance in Australian fixed income and equities the main reason for the negative 1-year return.  However, the Fund still maintains a strong accrued funding ratio of 125.6% (down from 130% in FY2021) which will enable CoINVEST to pay entitlements when due and continue to hold a strong net asset and funding ratio position with an overall Fund balance of $1.87b, remaining financially sound.

With a new strategic plan in place, and significant investment in our transformation journey, the business will continue to strive and make improvements to support our three key aspirations of putting the members at the centre of everything we do, reaching 100% coverage of the Construction Industry Long Service Leave Scheme, and creating a best practice model in running portable entitlement schemes. These aspirations will be achieved by focussing on member experience; people and culture; managing and administering the Fund; and our systems, processes and governance.  During FY2022, CoINVEST:

  • ·      Introduced a new organisational structure with an increase in staff resources and new members to the Executive team to ensure that CoINVEST has the right people to take CoINVEST into its next chapter of delivering a superior member experience.

  • ·      Defined a new Vision, Purpose and Strategic Direction that will phase the delivery of key milestones in line with the focus areas, whilst ensuring we are representing the industry, its workers, working subcontractors, employers and other stakeholders with clear prioritisation and focus.

  • ·      Improved systems and processes to improve our service to members as well as additional resources to prevent backlogs occurring in the future.

  • ·      Partnered with industry Stakeholders, Incolink and MBAV, to support the respective vaccination bus initiative and ‘Get The Jab Done’ campaigns to help protect the health and wellbeing of those in the construction industry and support the industry remaining open and viable during COVID.

  • ·      Undertook an Investment Strategy Review and Asset Liability Modelling analysis that provides a commitment to improving investment governance practices, accountability and transparency.

·      Made important improvements to our risk and compliance frameworks and governance practices.

On behalf of the Board, we thank Director, Barry Terzic, Representative of Metal Trade Workers who ended his tenure in August 2022 and has made a significant contribution to the CoINVEST. We also thank the Executive team, for their leadership and work done to date on the strategic initiatives, and all the CoINVEST staff for their efforts over the year, in particularly those directed towards ensuring the Scheme continued to function and improve upon the member experience in challenging and uncertain times.

To conclude, we thank industry members for their support through the CoINVEST transformation journey, and the Directors for their ongoing contributions to CoINVEST and the construction industry.


Jenny Acton

Chair of the Board of Directors, CoINVEST Limited


Craig Bell

Chief Executive Officer, CoINVEST Limited


Fund Performance

Let’s take a look at some of the highlights of the performance of the long service leave Fund over the 2021/2022 financial year.

Fund Highlights


Benefits paid to members


Investment return to the Fund

7 years

Scheme has been fully funded


Funding ratio

Fund Commentary

The 2022 financial year proved to be volatile for investment markets with a distinct contrast of results between the two half year results. The first six months were relatively uneventful, with positive investment returns and positive sentiment as the prevalence of COVID-19 and lockdowns reduced. 

The second half was far more challenging as major global markets were negatively impacted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, creating a new level of uncertainty, economic disruption and impacts to supply chains, along with central bank monetary policy raising interest rates to combat ongoing inflationary pressures.   

Despite poor performance in investment markets during the year, the Fund maintained a strong accrued funding ratio of 125.6% as at 30 June 2022.

The annual investment return of the Fund for the financial year ended 30 June 2022 was -3.64% net of all fund manager fees and taxes. This return was the first negative return since the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) (the Fund reported a 1-year return of -10.34% during the GFC). Negative performance in Australian fixed income and equities were the reason for the negative 1-year return. 

Whilst a negative return fails to meet return expectations, the investment risk profile of the Fund’s strategic asset allocation does allow for an incidence of negative return over time and the Fund has shown resilience in a very difficult year.

The Fund is a long-term investor and maintains a long-term investment horizon to meet its long-term liabilities in paying Long Service Leave benefits to its members. As such, it is important to not look at the year’s performance in isolation but the longer-term performance over five and ten years.

CoINVEST has consistently outperformed (net after manager fees and taxes) both its return objective and its asset class weighted benchmark over the longer term: three, five, seven and ten years. This is a better reflection of the Fund meeting its long-term objectives.

Over a ten-year period, the Fund’s investment return (after manager fees and taxes) was 8.83%, which is 2.53% higher than the return objective of 6.3%.

The portfolio has been constructed with the advice of our Investment Advisors, WTW, with risk objectives to limit the likelihood of a total capital loss to no more than 2 in 10 years. This objective has been achieved over the past decade.

We work closely with Willis Towers Watson (WTW) in terms of positioning the portfolio with regular market and economic insights on strategic asset allocation, and monitoring of investment fund managers. Below are the highlights of the Fund’s performance in FY2022:



Equities, both domestic and foreign, were a material contributor to the negative performance for the financial year with a -8.3% annual net return, which was largely generated in the second half of the financial year when inflationary pressures increased, and the economic impacts of the Russia/Ukraine conflict emerged. The annual net return for the Australian share market was -6.8% and global equities was -12.5%. This is a turnaround, where over the longer term, i.e. 5, 7 and 10 year time periods, the Equities asset class was actually the highest performing.



Real assets contributed significantly to performance, producing a positive investment return of 13.15% for the year. Unlisted assets produced some excellent returns and have generally performed better than listed investments. The Fund recorded strong results from the health property sector, global infrastructure investments and internally managed property.



The Alternatives asset class was the greatest detractor to the Fund’s performance compared to the total benchmark, with an annual return of -0.73% compared to an inflation linked benchmark of 9.09%. The main reason for the underperformance was the allocations to Australian fixed income and global equities within this asset class during the year. The performance of Alternatives over the longer-term remains positive.



The Fixed Income asset class produced the largest negative return for the Fund at -10.51%, which was in line with the benchmark. Ongoing interest rate volatility and wider credit spreads contributed to the negative performance.


CASH /2%

Cash returns were flat throughout the year and the actual return of 0.36% exceeded the Bloomberg Ausbond Bank Bill Index.


Board of Directors

The CoINVEST board has eleven Directors, consisting of eight industry representatives and three independents.

Jenny Acton

Independent Director and Chair

David St. John

Independent Director

Di Fulton

Independent Director

Jenny Acton was appointed as a Director and Chair of the Board of Directors on the 1st of October 2021. She is Chair of the People and Culture Committee and a member of the Finance and Investment and Audit Committee. 

Jennifer is an experienced non-executive Director and currently is Chair of State Trustees Limited, State Trustees Financial Services Limited and the Port of Hastings Corporation. She has previously been a Director in the transport, water and education industries. She is also a member of the Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal and provides consultancy services. 

As well as being a qualified economist, Jennifer was a Professor of Law at Monash University and a long-term Presidential member of Australia’s national workplace relations tribunal.


David St. John was appointed as a Director from the 1st of October 2019.  David is Chair of the Finance and Investment Committee and serves on the Audit Committee and the People and Culture Committee.  David has an extensive background in investment management as a practitioner and as a consultant. He currently sits on the Investment Committee at Deakin University and works on a part time basis as an expert advisor at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

David’s career included investment consulting at William M. Mercer where he was a World Wide Partner, and he was Chief Investment Officer at UniSuper for eight years from 2001 to 2009.  He also has past experience as a Member and Chair of Legal Super’s Investment Committee, and as a Non-Executive Director of the Motor Accidents Insurance Board in Tasmania.  David holds a Bachelor of Agricultural Science (BAgrSc), a Master of Business Administration (MBA), and a Graduate Diploma in Applied Finance and Investment.  He is a Senior Fellow of the Financial Services Institute of Australasia (SF Fin) and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (FAICD).

Di Fulton was appointed as a Director on the 1st of October 2015. She is Chair of the Audit Committee, a member of the Finance and Investment Committee, and the People and Culture Committee. 

Di is an experienced non-executive Director with a background in the technology and telecommunications sector spanning more than 25 years. She has an extensive commercial background as an operational executive working across sales, marketing, customer experience and business transformation. Prior to joining the CoINVEST board, Di was the Executive Director of Global Commercial Operations with Telstra. Di holds a Graduate Diploma of Business and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).

Robert Graauwmans

Building Trades Workers

Barry Terzic

Metal Trades Workers

Paddy McCrudden

Building Trades Workers

Arron Harris

Electrical Trades Workers

Robert Graauwmans was appointed as a Director on the Board on the 1st of July 2017.  Robert has been a full time official of the CFMEU since 2006.  

He was responsible for the Western Districts of Victoria for six years, and then moved to Melbourne to represent Mobile Crane Hire and the Inner Eastern Suburbs.  Robert is President of the CFMEU in Victoria.  Robert is a member of the Audit Committee.  Robert has been reappointed for another 4 year term to the CoINVEST Board.

Barry Terzic was appointed as a Director on the Board on 16 October 2018.  After qualifying as a fitter and machinist in NSW in 1982, Barry worked in the trade for two years.  After obtaining a degree in industrial relations in 1987, he commenced employment at what is now the Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union in 1988 as a national research officer.  Barry worked in this role until 2002, principally as an industrial advocate for the AMWU.

In 2002, Barry commenced employment as an adviser to the then shadow minister for industrial relations and shadow attorney general in the Commonwealth parliament.  He commenced employment with the AMWU’s Victorian branch in 2005 as an industrial officer. While there, he completed legal studies, was admitted as a lawyer and currently holds a lawyer’s practising certificate.  Barry was reappointed for another 4 year term to the CoINVEST Board.

Paddy McCrudden was appointed as a Director on the Board on the 22nd of November 2012.  

He is a member of the Finance and Investment Committee of the Board.  Paddy was employed by CBUS from 2005 to 2010. 

He re-joined the Plumbing Trades Employees Union in 2010 and currently holds the positions of Assistant Secretary and Federal President.  

He is also a Director of the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre, the Plumbing Joint Training Fund, the Plumbing Advisory Council and the Indigenous Plumbing and Sanitation Foundation.

Arron Harris was appointed as a Director on the 9th of May 2017.  Arron has worked in the electrical industry for more than 25 years after completing an electrical apprenticeship and has worked on many multi million dollar projects including major retail centre upgrades and medical projects.  

In 2006 Arron became a branch organiser with the ETU Victorian Branch representing electrical workers in the contracting industry sector.  Arron is also an active member in the community with sporting coaching positions.  In November 2016, Arron was appointed as an Assistant Secretary of the ETU Victorian Branch.  Arron also serves on the People and Culture committee of the Board.

David Newnham

Building Trades Employers

Michael Purnell

Electrical Trades Employers

Tim Piper

Metal Trades Employers

Grant Donald

Building Trades Employers

David Newnham was appointed to the Board on the 1st of July 2011 after being an alternate Director since March 2011.  David has 40 years of experience in the construction industry after graduating as a civil engineer.  He has been State Building Manager for AV Jennings.  

After a management buyout of Stonehaven Homes in 1997, he became Managing Director retiring in 2016.  He remains a Director of the company.  David has been a Director and President of the Master Builders Association of Victoria and was a member of the Building Practitioners Board from 1998 to 2006.  

He has also served as a Director of Incolink, the construction industry severance fund.  David is a member of the Finance and Investment Committee.  David has also served as an expert witness for registration appeals at the Victorian Building Authority and mentor for the Victorian Small Business Mentoring Service.

Michael Purnell joined the Board on 16th of March 2016.  Michael has a long history of Company Director, General Management and Management Consulting roles with high profile organisations including 21 years in the construction industry.  

He has served on the National & Victorian Councils of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) as well as the NECA Industry Advisory Committee.  He is currently also a Director of Protect and NECA Education & Careers.  

He is a Certified Practising Accountant (CPA), a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Australian Society of Accountants.  Michael is a member of the Audit Committee.  Michael has been reappointed for another 4 year term to the CoINVEST Board.

Tim Piper was appointed as a Director on the 1st of July 2019 and is a member of the People and Culture Committee of the Board.  He has been the Ai Group Head in Victoria since 2002.  

Prior to the Ai Group he spent five years as the Executive Director at the Australian Retailers Association Victoria and has previously practiced as a barrister and solicitor and worked as a journalist.  Last year he was appointed as an Officer of Australia (AM).  

He is also Chair of the Industry Capability Network Victoria and sits on the Boards of the Portable Long Service Leave Authority and GS1 Australia. Tim sits on the Ministerial WorkSafe Advisory Committee and is Deputy Chair of the Rail Industry Development Advisory Committee.  He has also been an Australia Day Ambassador and received the Centenary Medal for Services to the business community.

Grant Donald was appointed as a Director of the Board on the 1st of February 2017.

Grant is a long-term Director of a family run commercial plumbing business in Ballarat.  Grant is an Executive Board Member & Treasurer of the Master Plumbers and Mechanical Services Association of Australia. 

Grant is also a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.  Grant has been reappointed for another 4 year term to the CoINVEST board.

Executive Team

The executive team meets regularly to plan and control the operations and strategic management of CoINVEST’s activities.

Craig Bell

Chief Executive Officer

Darren McConnell

Chief Finance and Investment Officer

Adam Cusack

General Manager, Membership Services

CoINVEST appointed Craig Bell as Chief Executive Officer in September 2021.  

Craig has over 30 years in finance related roles, across a variety of industries including investment banking, state government, and member-based organisations.  He is also the Chair of the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation.  

Most recently, Craig was the CEO at Foresters Financial, one of Australia’s largest member-owned friendly societies that offers a range of investment and insurance products.  Prior to this, Craig was the CFO for the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.  

Craig is passionate about creating member-centric organisations. He is a Fellow of CPA Australia, a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree.  


Darren joined CoINVEST in May 2022.  

His finance and investment background has seen him hold senior and executive positions at prominent institutions, most recently as Chief Financial Officer at the Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation and Chief Financial and Operating Officer at the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation.  


Adam joined CoINVEST in June 2020 and leads the membership and operations functions for the Fund.

Adam came to CoINVEST from Incolink where he had executive roles as General Manager Member Experience and Special Projects Executive. Prior to that, Adam had senior roles at Origin Energy in Solar and Retail Operations and customer experience at ANZ Bank.

Adam is a senior customer experience and digital transformation leader with expertise across operational leadership, strategy, human-centred design, program delivery and business redesign. He has a background in Banking, Insurance, Trust Administration and retail Energy experience.

Catryn Tuckwell

General Counsel, Legal and Compliance

David Lang

General Manager, Technology and Innovation

Carly Hendon

General Manager, People and Culture

Catryn has an extensive background as a commercial lawyer and company secretary. Prior to joining CoINVEST in May 2022, she has previously held General Counsel roles at Arts Centre Melbourne, Scope, and Asahi brands.

Combining her legal skills and commercial acumen, Catryn is an experienced and proven business partner to senior management, with strengths in managing day-to-day legal risk, supporting transactions and strategic projects, and improving governance across the entire business.  


David joined CoINVEST in February 2022 and has over 10 years of experience in IT senior roles across automotive, manufacturing, engineering, and motorsport industries, as well as not for profit, membership, and charity organisations.

He has an extensive background of leading teams, digital transformation, ERP implementation, cloud platform, security, and application implementation.

With previous senior IT roles at Movember and the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, David is a hands on IT manager with experience in implementing effective solutions across the whole of ITC infrastructure and business applications.

Carly joined CoINVEST in June 2022 and has a robust background in senior people and culture roles, most recently at Honan Insurance, Winc, and BP among others.

With over 13 years of experience in solutions-focused human resources projects, Carly is passionate about driving strategic and operational results in performance, engagement and change across all areas of CoINVEST.  

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