“Go PRS, Get Treats!” Rewarded Malaysians who save for Retirement

The inaugural contest highlights the convenience of starting a retirement fund online and underscores the importance of financial literacy

“Go PRS, Get Treats” Grand Prize recipient Lim Tzyy Wee

PETALING JAYA (24 January 2020): Private Pension Administrator Malaysia’s (PPA) inaugural “Go PRS, Get Treats” contest saw Malaysians throughout the country participating and taking the initiative to plan as well as save for their future with the Private Retirement Schemes (PRS), a voluntary long-term savings and investment scheme.

The Grand Prize of RM3,000 in PRS units went to Selangor resident Lim Tzyy Wee, who received his reward during a prize presentation ceremony organized by PPA. It was a case of double happiness for Lim as he was also among the 80 recipients of a PRS Treat, worth RM100 in PRS units, awarded through the contest’s monthly draw, from August to November 2019.

“I only came across PRS two years ago and had some extra money to save in 2019,” the 33-year-old Lim said. “I don’t really have much time outside working hours, so I personally like how simple the online process is to enrol for a PRS account. The whole process took less than 30 minutes.”

“The PRS Online service was developed with individuals like Lim in mind,” said Husaini Hussin, CEO of PPA. “In the age of fintech where people are comfortable getting their information online, they would naturally do their own research and read through the information provided on PPA’s website.”

Seh Soon Lee, Second Prize Recipient

“Aside from highlighting the importance of retirement planning, we launched this contest knowing the value people placed on the convenience of an online service,” Husaini added. “With PRS Online and some easy-to-use tools like the retirement calculator available on PPA’s website, it is very easy to start saving in PRS. The PRS Treat is just a little extra reward to the recipient’s retirement savings.”

This was true for Seh Soon Lee, who took home the Second Prize of RM2,000 in PRS units, and Tee Chui Teng, who received the Third Prize of RM1,000 in PRS units. Both knew about PRS before the contest and were happy to see PRS Treats on offer when they decided to take the plunge.

For Seh, saving for retirement was not a priority because he only just started working three years ago. But reading about “Go PRS, Get Treats” in the news got him thinking about how much he needed to have in order to live comfortably once he stopped working.

“According to PPA’s retirement calculator, I would need RM1 million to have a withdrawal plan of about RM6,000 per month for 20 years,” said Seh, who hails from Perak. “It is good to diversify and have extra retirement savings due to inflation, as the mandatory scheme alone might not be enough.”

On the other hand, it was about managing priorities and budget for Johor-born Tee. She first learnt about PRS through articles on the PRS personal tax relief of up to RM3,000 per year. The affordability factor of PRS Online stood out too, as the minimum initial investment amount is only RM100.

“Although I knew about the tax relief, as my friends would share articles and remind me during tax season, I didn’t know I could enrol online,” Tee said. “The contest showed me how to do so with just a few simple steps. I did it in my own time and the e-banking transaction was convenient and secure.”

“It is great to see the top three prize recipients coming from three different states, with all below the age of 35 to boot. They might be at different stages of life, but it is always the right time to start cultivating the habit of regular savings.” Husaini said. “We believe a contest like this raises awareness on retirement preparedness and is in line with the National Strategy for Financial Literacy 2019-2023.”

Every month during 2019’s “Go PRS, Get Treats” contest, 20 PRS Treats worth RM100 in PRS units each were awarded via monthly draws to individuals who enrolled via PRS Online and answered three questions. All enrolments during the contest period were then automatically entered into the Grand PRS Treats Draw for the Grand Prize, Second Prize and Third Prize.

Tee Chui Teng, Third Prize Recipient

This year, PPA intends to launch another contest in the second-quarter (Q2) so that more Malaysians will join the close to 460,000 PRS Members already on the retirement savings bandwagon. As at 31 December 2019, the Net Asset Value (NAV) of all 57 PRS funds stood at RM3.5 billion.

Grand Prize recipient Lim Tzyy Wee (fifth from right), with PPA’s CEO Husaini Hussin (fourth from right) and Wong Mew Sum, PPA’s Acting Head of Marketing and Communication (third from left)

Going forward, PPA will continue to produce educational content to lift the level of financial literacy among Malaysians, and make information as accessible and as transparent as possible. For example, the PRS fund performance page on PPA’s website has been enhanced to make it easier to view all PRS fund performance, including their respective sales charges and management fees.

Below is a quick view of PRS fund performance according to fund categories, annualised since inception:

Source: Morningstar (6 Jan 2019)

*Annualized returns indicate the average growth for each year over a given time period, which in this instance, is from the date of funds’ inception up to 31 Dec 2019

For more information about PRS Online and PRS fund performance, please visit www.ppa.my