Teamwork makes the dream work

NRMA head of investments brings expertise to Aura Group for new multi-asset fund.

NRMA head of investments brings expertise to Aura Group for new multi-asset fund.

What goes into launching a new product?

A lot goes into launching a new product, but there are two components that make the process run smoother. One is a strong track record that is long enough to prove out an investment philosophy through different market cycles. The other is having a great partner that aligns with your goals, as I have found with Aura Group, where we share a similar mindset and values. Aura Group consists of an inviting, driven team of investors, alongside a dedicated compliance team. In choosing to partner with Aura Group, I was impressed by their focus on risk and compliance for investors, given how important that is in the investing and wealth management industry.

How did you research market opportunities?

I used my previous track record in multi-asset and multi-strategy portfolios to look at the market. It made sense to provide a product for wholesale investors that utilises an institutional framework-a more disciplined style of multi-asset portfolio construction. While I believe anyone can pull a multi-asset portfolio together, given the recent market volatility, it would be interesting to see where process and discipline have supported the returns of those portfolios.

What challenges did you face, and how were they overcome?

My biggest challenge was deciding whether to go it alone or find a partner. I am glad I went with the latter. The Aura Group team are very commercially minded and highly collaborative. It's been a great journey so far.

What is unique about your offering?

Investment markets are unpredictable. They are driven by the complexity of not only fundamentals but also human emotion. I take a quantitative approach, where I am ultimately seeking to statistically improve the probability of reducing risk-and therefore capital loss-and allow compounding to accumulate wealth for the investor. Avoiding negative returns is a focus. Similarly, when the probability improves with opportunities through macro data points, greater conviction is gained to capitalise on these with a disciplined implementation approach.

Can you explain how you expect the fee structure to work?

We wanted to remain competitive with the fees, while acknowledging my previous strong track record, so we ended up on middle ground versus peers.  

What are the biggest challenges currently facing this asset class?

There are many, but the biggest concern is the consolidation of the Super Industry. Perhaps there will be opportunities for independent multi-asset funds to provide a different value proposition for investors (or for SMSF or HNW clients) that want a disciplined institutional framework for multi-asset solutions.