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Graviton possesses the formula for a winning team

| Market Forces

Ready, set, kick-off! 8 September marked the official start of the much-anticipated 2023 Rugby World Cup (RWC) in France. Supporters and sports professionals of all backgrounds will be watching for the duration of the tournament to determine whether the preparations made behind the scenes match the performance on the field. All eyes are on the current champions, South Africa’s Springbok rugby team, and whether they can defend their hard-won 2019 RWC title and emerge victorious yet again in 2023.

In rugby, like any sport, a coach highlights the need for the team to win. It is therefore vital that players stick to the gameplan and execute this in line with the coach’s strategy. Losing a game is a good reminder for a team to have consistent momentum regardless of losses. It also means that the team needs to work harder, develop a stronger tactic, and convert their weaknesses into strengths. A great team always aims to improve itself to achieve their objective of winning the tournament. Observing 20 teams across 48 matches makes for a very dynamic 51 days.

While some might see it, many will not realise the comparable psychological impact between a tournament such as this and the psychology that goes along with investing.

The preparations before the game

Rugby coaches typically create game plans that consist of many variables that keep in mind the long-term goal of winning the trophy. The game plan will highlight the coach’s depth of understanding of the game and how he can co-ordinate an entire team of players, and their unique skills, according to the overarching strategy that he considers optimal. Sanlam Investments Multi-Manager, the investment intel that underpins the Graviton solutions and portfolios, also uses a similar approach when developing strategies for clients. As the largest multi-manager investment team in South Africa, our skilled investment professionals possess a depth of industry experience and an ability to blend skillful fund managers with the right strategies through continuous market and manager research. Moreover, the team is diversified across the investment industry with decades of experience, which solidifies our competitive edge. This allows them to generate investment philosophies that guide investors to achieve long term returns. At Graviton, through our solutions architecture approach we deliberately construct portfolios that cater to different client segment needs through mass customisation. Delivering outcome-based solutions is the core proposition of our portfolio construction and research ecosystem, that brings together our industrialised investment process to meet clients’ investment needs and goals. We consider transformation, sustainability, and cost from a holistic point of view – given the role and responsibility that the retirement industry plays in our broader economy and in communities.

Our regular client engagements allow us to develop a deeper understanding of investor’s liabilities and investment objectives as well as how they relate to risk, to create solutions that speak to their changing needs. Whether the need stems from someone who is new to the workplace and looking for a solution that will help them invest for the long term, or someone who is retiring and preparing themselves for a sustainable income in retirement, we will help them achieve their investment goal while considering real-world impacts, return, risk, style premia, and cost. We blend the right menu of investment strategies with the right asset mix, suited to the environment, to maximise the likelihood of achieving investment objectives.

A consistent game plan

While investors will have varying definitions of what an optimal strategy is, the common denominator of the strategy is consistency. Whether goals are achieved in the short term – such as France winning the tournament’s opening match – or whether they are achieved over the long term, such as South Africa winning the Rugby World Cup again, remaining consistent with the agreed-upon game plan is vital. It is natural to believe that a consistent game plan is made up of choices. For example, selecting the right mix of players who can play in all types of environments. However, a consistent game plan is made up of the respective coaches constantly reviewing their players’ performance against the varying match environments and making the right calls as the games progress. In the end the coach knows and understands the game plan better than the players. Thus, a consistent game plan is not about the sum of the choices made, but rather the commitment to them. As Graviton, we are committed to a disciplined framework and process with a strong emphasis on manager research, market research and portfolio construction. Our competitive advantage is that we are focused on understanding our client requirements as a starting point, in order to build customised solutions that consider every client’s circumstances and to help them achieve their investment goals. Like a rugby team, every player has a unique position to play, with the main objective of landing the ball over the opponents’ goal lines.

Diversification and adaptation

Diversification in investing is also key to reaching investment goals. By diversifying across various investment styles and asset classes, as well as increasing and reducing their manager weightings due to changing market conditions, our investment team manages the risk to which a client’s portfolio is exposed. Conditions on the field tend to vary throughout the tournament. On some days, the field is extremely dry and on others it is extremely wet. This requires players to adapt their playing style to take best advantage of the weather conditions outside of their control since they would still need to achieve their goal of winning the tournament. Accounting for all types of conditions and respective adaptability should be hallmarks of a good game plan – instead of a sudden deviation from it. Our investment approach assists in positioning client portfolios in the same way, in order to weather the storms in the market.  The game plan needs to be solid, thereby ensuring investors stay the course.

Managing volatility and emotions

Throughout every game and the entire tournament, there will be a rollercoaster of emotions as teams win and lose. All sports participants need to realise that this is a normal part of the nature of sport and should rather use each win and loss as a tool to improve their performance in their next match. The market is extremely volatile and requires a multi manager that it able to manage the volatility and changing investor emotions. As solution architects, we are deliberate about maintaining a proven and disciplined investment process that focuses on offering investors repeatable results. We customise unique solutions for you, based on a deep understanding of your investment goals and how you view risk.

By developing the right investment strategy, sticking to a consistent game plan, diversifying and adapting to a changing environment, possessing an ability to remain invested through market volatility while selecting the right managers, we are able to gain a competitive edge and develop a formula for a winning team. At Graviton our solutions architecture proposition is driven and supported by a greater investment team of 31 investment professionals. The breadth and depth of our team spreads across our market research, manager research and portfolio construction capabilities. It also allows us to navigate local and global markets to bring you a world-class portfolio management and consulting value proposition that is aligned to market conditions and mandated requirements. Graviton is therefore able to guide clients to remain invested through both the wins and losses in their portfolios throughout all phases of their lives.

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