Terms of Use

Last updated: 12 May 2021

  1. Overview

Welcome to Kernel.

We want to be clear about what you agree to when you use our services and our website. That’s what these terms cover.

By using our services, you agree to these terms. If you don’t follow these terms, we can suspend or terminate your access to our services.

Even if you don’t have an account with us, these terms will apply when you visit our website.

We innovate, grow, and change. So, we might need to change these terms. You should check these terms from time to time for any changes. The terms on this page are the ones that apply when you use our services, any changes will apply if you keep using our services after we’ve updated these terms.

We’ll tell you when we last updated these terms at the top of the page. If the changes are significant, we’ll also post a notification on our website and email you if you have an account.

Please read these terms alongside our Privacy Policy. Our Privacy Policy tells you what information we might collect about you, and how we might use that information.

The world of investments is full of acronyms and confusing terms. We’ve answered commonly asked questions in our Help Centre. You should get advice if you’re not sure about your obligations or want some more information.

  1. General

When we say ‘we’, ‘us’, ‘our’, or ‘Kernel’, we mean Kernel Wealth Limited – a company incorporated in New Zealand. Our company number is 7050334 and our registered office is at Level 1, 166 Queen Street, Auckland Central, Auckland, 1010.

When we talk about our ‘services’, we mean all the services we provide, including access to our website www.kernelwealth.co.nz. We provide our services in accordance with New Zealand law, which will govern how these terms work, your rights, and our obligations.

  1. Our services

You can create an account to use our services if you’re aged 18 years or older and you are in New Zealand.

In some unlikely scenarios, we might not be able to make the website available. You should know that your access is on an ‘as is, where is, as available’ basis. That means there might be times when you can’t access our services.

We don’t make any promises, representations, or warranties as to:

  • the accuracy of the content of this website; or
  • when or how you’ll be able to access our services.

Kernel operates in a highly regulated sector. We don’t do anything that might be misleading or deceptive, or anything else the law says we can’t.

We’re not liable for:

  • loss or damage suffered by you through your use of our website, or your inability to access our website;
  • errors or omissions in the content of our website;
  • loss, fees, or costs you incur or suffer when using our services;
  • malicious code, viruses, blocked access, or if our website doesn’t work.

Sometimes, we might direct you to other websites through links on our website. We can’t control the content of those websites and won’t be responsible for what you might find there. You should check the terms of use for those websites.

Our services are delivered to you digitally, therefore we operate on a paperless basis. We’ll make all the information about your transactions and account activity available to you online. This includes the information that we are required to make available to you under s 5(1)(a) of the Financial Advisers (Custodians of FMCA Financial Products) Regulations 2014 (or equivalent regulations).

  1. Our fees

To use our services, you need to pay the current monthly membership fee. We publish the membership fee amount on our website.

We deduct our membership fee, in arrears, at the end of each month from your Wallet. If you have joined part way through a month, we may adjust the membership fee we deduct at the end of that month to reflect this.

If you don’t have enough funds in your Wallet when we try to deduct the fee, then we will deduct the amount you owe us when you do. We might make more than one deduction if we can’t cover the membership fee at once.

We might also cancel, withdraw, or redeem interests in your investments on your behalf to pay an outstanding membership fee if we consider that outstanding amount to significant amount overdue.

If you invest in Kernel funds you will be charged fund management fees based on the amount you invest .You can find details of the current fund management fees on our website.

We’ll let you know by posting a notification on our website and, if you are a member, by sending you an email if we’re going to:

  • change the price of our membership fee;
  • change the way that we deduct fees; or
  • change the date that we deduct the membership fee.


5. Not investment advice

We tell you about investments generally. But we’re not able to take into account your personal situation or your financial goals, so any information we provide you with is not personalised advice. So, you shouldn’t rely on it in that way.

By ‘personalised advice’, we mean includes investment, legal, financial, tax, and accounting advice, along with other types of personalised advice.

You should seek advice from a financial adviser if you aren’t sure about whether or not an investment is right for you.

  1. Investing

We’re here to help make investing in funds easier for you.

We do not guarantee the performance of any investment or fund made available through the service.

The way to get more information about a fund is by reading the information on each fund page at www.kernelwealth.co.nz and by reading the Product Disclosure Statement (this is often called a ‘PDS’). The PDS will tell you the important information about that fund, including the risks and fees, so make sure you’re comfortable with it before deciding on an investment.

If you place an order for an investment through us, you agree that you’ve read and understood the PDS and disclosure details for that fund. We’ll ask you to confirm this when you invest.

You can place an order to invest by completing an online order. We process orders twice a week, on Mondays and Wednesdays. Orders will be batched into processing at 12pm on Monday or Wednesday, depending on when they were placed. For example, an order placed on Friday at 2pm will be processed on Monday at 12pm (excluding public holidays).

We can’t process your order if you don’t have enough funds in your Wallet. If that happens, or if there’s another problem with your order, we might process your order in the next week’s investment cycle. If we plan to change the frequency that we process orders, we’ll let you know before we do.

The price you will pay for an order will be the unit price at the time your order is processed by us. This will be different to the unit price published online because the value of the fund is likely to move between valuation dates.

When we process an order, we purchase the maximum number of units for the amount shown in your order and credit your portfolio with the number of units bought.

We do not charge any fees for placing your order.

We can:

  • put limits on orders;
  • cancel orders; or
  • amend orders.

If funds that you have invested in make distributions, and you have elected to have these paid out in cash, these will be paid to your Wallet.

  1. Withdrawing

To withdraw part or all of an investment you hold in a fund, you can place an order to sell by completing our online process.

We process orders twice a week, on Mondays and Wednesdays (excluding public holidays). Orders will be batched into processing at 12pm on Monday or Wednesday, depending on when they were placed.

Since the value of a unit changes, you’ll need to specify the number of units to sell in the order form. You can find the latest unit value and the number of units you hold in any fund on your member portal.

We will credit your Wallet with the amount of money equaling the withdrawal value, less any tax payable, normally on the Friday following the processing of your withdrawal order.

To withdraw from your Wallet, simply click ‘withdraw’. We’ll then arrange for the amount you specify to be transferred to your nominated bank account (see more information about your nominated bank account below at clause 8).

  1. Wallet

Your Wallet tells you how much you have available to invest through our services.

When you sign up to use our services, we ask for your bank account details. You must use a New Zealand registered bank account as your nominated bank account.

We don’t offer banking or bill payment services, so we can only:

  • accept deposits to your Wallet from that bank account; and
  • pay money to that bank account when you make a withdrawal from your Wallet.

If you want to change your bank account details email us at support@kernelwealth.co.nz.

To make a deposit into your Wallet, you’ll need to use the unique code that we give you when you sign up as a reference. Otherwise, we may not be able to tell that you made the deposit, which may lead to delays.

All assets (including money) in your Wallet and your interests in a fund will be held by a custodian on your behalf.

Our custodian is Adminis NZ Limited. We can change our custodian at any time.

When you deposit money to your Wallet, that money goes to a New Zealand-registered bank account in the name of our custodian’s nominee. Your money might be ‘pooled’ with other people’s money using the service.

Since that’s not our bank account, we don’t have any control over it. So, we won’t be liable for any failures or delays.

Money in your Wallet may attract and accrue interest from the bank account where our custodian holds it. We retain that interest as a charge for the services.

  1. Intellectual property

We own (or have the right to use) the content, material, layout, and design of this website and all documents and other materials that we use when we provide you with our services. That includes our brand name and our logos.

You can access, download, view, or print information contained on this website for your own purposes (so long as its only for personal reasons).

But otherwise, unless we give you written permission (or the law says you can) you can’t use, copy, modify, adapt, store, distribute, print, display, perform, publish, or redistribute any part of this website, or other documents and materials that we provide you.

You might have rights in information you give us. When you provide us with information, you grant us a right to use that information for the purposes of providing our services, including developing new products and services. We can copy, distribute, edit, and publish that information in any way, for as long as we want. We won’t pay you for it.

We’ll only use your personal information in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

  1. Tax

Our funds are ‘portfolio investment entities’ (or ‘PIEs’ for short) for tax purposes. PIEs have a top tax rate of 28%. Your Wallet is subject to tax on the interest earned at your applicable resident withholding tax rate (‘RWT rate’). You can find out more on the Inland Revenue website, www.ird.govt.nz.

We need to check your tax status so, when you register to use our services, we’ll ask for your tax details.

You’ll need to:

  • provide your IRD number;
  • confirm the countries where you’re a tax resident and provide us with your relevant tax identification number(s); and
  • provide us with your ‘prescribed investor rate’ (your ‘PIR’) and ‘RWT rate’ so we can apply the correct tax rates.

If your tax details change, you must tell us immediately.

If you’ve given us the wrong tax rate, you might be required to pay tax (or you might be eligible to for a tax credit). If this happens get in touch with Inland Revenue.

Inland Revenue publishes helpful information on its website, www.ird.govt.nz, including how to figure out your correct PIR and RWT rate.

Currently, since our funds are multi-rate PIEs,  if you overpay tax by being on a PIR that is too high, you cannot claim back the overpayment.

Our custodian is a ‘PIE Investor Proxy’ (which some people call a ‘PIP’). This means that our custodian will hold your investments in each fund, on your behalf, for tax purposes.

Our custodian will also calculate tax on those investments.

We might cancel, withdraw, or redeem interests in your investments on your behalf to pay tax you owe. We might also make investments on your behalf to reflect tax credits you receive.

  1. Your account

You need to create an account to use our services.

When you do so, you warrant that any information you provide is accurate.


  • create an account for someone else without their permission, or let others do the same for you;
  • tell others your password or username;
  • try to log in to another person’s account or try to bypass our security procedures;
  • try to ‘break’ our website or decompile, reproduce, reverse engineer, or modify our website, or misuse our website in any way; and


  • keep your password and username safe and secure; and
  • change your password regularly; and
  • keep the device you use to access our services safe, and make sure you change the password for that device regularly.
  1. Kids Accounts 

An account may be opened by a parent or grandparent (“Adult”) for a New Zealand resident under 18 years old (“Child”) with the Adult as a guardian. We reserve the right to request evidence of relationship to our satisfaction before authorising any transaction. The joint account application process is followed but if one of the applicants is under 18 years old,  the Child is the owner of the account and the Adult is a signatory to the account.

Transactions can only be made on an account in the name of a Child on behalf and for the benefit of the Child, and the account cannot be used by an Adult for their own personal benefit. If at any time this requirement is not met we may, without notice, close the relevant account(s).

The Adult signatory to a Child’s account is required to indemnify us from any losses, costs, claims and damages arising directly or indirectly as a result of the operation of the account, except in cases where Kernel has acted wrongfully or negligently.

Under the Child’s 18th birthday, the Adult signatory will be the only person who can place orders or make withdrawals from or make changes to the account. The child can have a view-only access. Withdrawals can only be made to an account in the name of the Adult.

The Adult agrees that as of the Child’s 18th birthday that they will no longer be a signatory to the Account, and the Child will have full sole control and able to add a nominated bank account for withdrawals.

13. Our obligations

We have obligations to check that you are who say you are under New Zealand’s anti-money laundering laws.

We use identity information you provide us with – and compare that to information held by others (like government agencies) – to do so.

You can read more about this in our Privacy Policy.

If we can’t verify you, the law says that we can’t offer our services to you. So, we might:

  • delay activating or suspend your account;
  • hold off selling, redeeming, or withdrawing any of your investments; and
  • not process any withdrawals from your Wallet.

We – and our custodian – also have obligations under New Zealand’s financial laws and regulations (including the Financial Advisers (Custodians of FMCA Financial Products) Regulations 2014 or any equivalent regulations).

This means that we might need to tell our custodian, the Financial Markets Authority, the IRD or other organisations as required by law, information about your transactions and your account activity.

14. When things go wrong

We can suspend or terminate your access at any time, for any amount of time.

We may do so whenever we think we need to, including if:

  • you breach any of these terms;
  • you fail to pay your fees;
  • we think the security of your account might be compromised;
  • the law says we should; or
  • we think that there’s a risk of harm.

If we suspend or terminate your account:

  • We can sell, redeem, or withdraw investments made by you using our services. If we do so, we’ll pay the net proceeds to the nominated bank account you’ve provided us (once we’ve deducted any costs, fees, expenses or other amounts owed to us).
  • If we’re holding any money which becomes unclaimed money, we can account for that money in accordance with the Unclaimed Money Act 1971.
  • We won’t refund any fees paid by you.
  • Our rights and your obligations under these terms won’t stop when it makes sense for them to continue.

If you breach these terms, and that breach results in someone making a claim against us (or telling us that they intend to), then you agree to cover all costs, expenses, and fees incurred or suffered by us in connection with that claim. But we’ll stay in control of that claim.

15. Deleting your account

You can suspend or terminate your membership at any time.

You can also ask us to delete certain information we hold. We’ve covered that in our Privacy Policy.

If you choose to suspend or terminate your membership, or if you ask us to delete your details:

  • you won’t be able to access our services;
  • we won’t refund any fees paid by you;
  • we can sell, redeem, or withdraw investments made by you using our services (and then pay the net proceeds to you, less any costs, fees, expenses or other amounts owed to us); and
  • our rights and your obligations under these terms won’t stop when it makes sense for them to continue.

16. Communicating with you

We’ll use the email address you provide to us to communicate with you. Please keep an eye out for important messages.

We might also send you emails about stuff we think you’ll be interested in, like new services and products we are offering, or information about investing.

We don’t want to clog up your inbox. You can unsubscribe from marketing emails from us by selecting the ‘unsubscribe’ button at the bottom of those emails (but, if you do, let us know if you change your mind!).

17. Contact us

We’re here to help!

If you’re stuck, need some help with our services, or want to make a complaint, you can contact us by filling in our ‘Contact Us’ form on the website.

18. Making a complaint

You can contact our external dispute resolution scheme for free through these contact details:

Financial Services Complaints Ltd Level 4, 101 Lambton Quay
PO Box 5967 Wellington 6140

Call: 0800 357 247

Email: complaints@fscl.org.nz