The Anglican Investment & Development Fund, Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn (AIDF) was established in 1967 by a small group of dedicated finance professional lay parishioners, along with the support of Bishop Warren and a $1,000 loan. The purpose was to subsidise loans and to make grants to parishes and diocesan agencies out of the profits. For many years it operated out of the AMP offices in Canberra although, given the strong support by lay members (depositors), it quickly established agencies in a number of towns throughout the Diocese. By 1974 it had repaid the initial loan, made grants of over $4,000 and produced an annual profit of $11,500. The Fund has operated profitably every year since inception, with profits either withheld as reserves or paid out as grants. The AIDF has voluntarily adopted capital adequacy guidelines as the appropriate standard for maintaining and increasing reserves each year. Reserves are invested in order to further support depositors’ funds. Today the fund has grown to have around $100m in total assets and an annual profit in the order of $1m.
The AIDF is established under the AIDF Ordinance which, through a 1917 NSW Act of Parliament, is a binding legal arrangement. The Ordinance includes a Diocesan guarantee of the fund and outlines its purposes. The AIDF provides loans to parishes and other diocesan agencies, including schools, for building or other capital works projects and also makes housing, car and personal loans to clergy and other persons employed by the Diocese.
The AIDFs core purposes of being a strong and significant supporter of local parishes, including their community activities and buildings, aligns with the depositors’ desires of not only receiving competitive and accessible accounts but also of supporting their own community. The AIDF depositors are a fundamental reason for the success of the AIDF over its’ long history.
The AIDF welcomes all depositors - including individuals, partnerships, businesses, charities/ community associations, NFP entities, trusts, and self-managed superannuation funds. The AIDF provides fee free accounts, including at call and term investments paying consistently highly competitive interest rates. In addition for the online “community accounts” the AIDF will donate a percentage back into the depositors’ local community.
The AIDF offers secure online transaction functionality including, BPay, Banklink (accounting), Cemtex (business salary files) and third party payment functionality. The system provider is Data-Action, who has many clients in the Credit Union sector. The AIDF also participates in the Bulk Electronic Clearing System (BECs), through Indue with the AIDF BSB being 702 389 (online use).
Summary of AIDF history since 1967
Advice to Investors
Investors should be aware that the AIDF is not subject to the normal requirement to have a prospectus and trust deed under the Corporations Law pursuant to an exemption issued by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission. The Fund is required to lodge annual audited financial statements with the Commission but has not been examined nor approved by the Commission.
Neither the AIDF nor its controlling body, the Anglican Church Property Trust Diocese of Canberra & Goulburn is prudentially supervised by APRA. Deposits with the Fund do not obtain the benefit of the depositor protection of the Banking Act 1959.
Repayment of deposits on demand is guaranteed by the Diocese of Canberra & Goulburn. The Board of the Fund has adopted a policy of increasing reserve funds from profits each year to support the Diocesan guarantee and to protect investors’ interests.
The majority of depositors' funds are invested in loans to schools, for parish buildings, clergy housing and Anglican welfare projects. Surplus liquidity from time to time may be invested in trustee investments, bank accepted bills, shares and unsecured convertible notes of companies listed on the Stock Exchange, first charge debentures in companies, and other approved securities
The AIDF has developed Anglican Direct to assist Parishes with their Planned Giving or Stewardship programs.
Anglican Direct enables people to financially support their Parish by authorising a regular direct debit to their bank or credit union account or alternatively through a payroll deduction.