Kristian Fok wants to add an Australian equities analyst to better inform the largest stock positions held by Cbus and to help tailor portfolios to better reflect its risk profile.

The appointment would bring the number of new additions to the Cbus investment team to seven.

Speaking at the Fiduciary Investors Symposium in the Mornington Peninsula, Fok, the executive manager, investment strategy at Cbus, said a stock analyst could, for example, inform the $29 billion fund on the impact of the Financial Services Inquiry on its holdings in Australian banks.

Currently the fund has to initiate such conversations with brokers. “I want people who know these things to come and tell me if this is a big deal or not in the context of our portfolios,” said Fok.

Another use of such a resource will be to give the fund the opportunity to tailor stock portfolios for their fund managers to run.

Fok said the creation of such portfolios was for the time being more important than any long term cost savings that could be derived from insourcing investments.

As part of the move to take the fund up a gear in sophistication, a credit, fixed income and cash specialist, an investment operations expert and a legal counsel have joined the investment team in the last month.

The fund is also currently interviewing for a specialist to oversee its hedge fund and alternatives program, someone to cover performance/ risk analytics and a further assistant in the investment operations team.

Fok explained the expansion as taking the fund to a new level of ability. “We need to build out the resources to manage the portfolio, growth and innovation in our investment strategy,” he said.

The move is likely to change the way it works with Frontier Advisors and Fok has already held a meeting with its investment consultant to inform them of this.

The three new appointments are as follows:

* Michael Guilday joins in the newly created position of investments legal counsel. He is an experienced corporate lawyer with expertise in investment/ funds management, equity and debt capital markets, superannuation, financial services, custody, and financial services regulation and reform.  He joins from the Goodman Group and will report to Trish Donohue, executive manager, investment management.

* Rob Leck joins as associate, public markets and will focus on credit, fixed interest and cash sectors, while also assisting in enhancing the quantitative tools used within the investment team. He joins from Vanguard Investments where he was a senior investment risk analyst. He will report to Brett Chatfield.

* Lachlan Richardson joins as investment operations associate, supporting Joe Youssef in the management of investment operations, and the relationship with the fund’s custodian JP Morgan. He joins from National Asset Servicing where he was most recently the manager of the unit pricing department.


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