When did your interest in financial markets start?
- I was a late bloomer with regards to investing – this developed while I was at varsity.
- I am driven by learning. Listening to friends that were studying financial degrees made me realise that there was a lot I didn’t know – this peaked my interest.
What did you study and why?
- BSc Chemical Engineering at UCT.
- My strengths at school were Mathematics and Science.
- I enjoy problem solving and puzzles – chemical engineering is known to enhance these skills.
- I knew that my degree was not limiting and would allow me to follow different career paths – after completing my degree I realised that I did not want to be an engineer.
- While at Northstar I have completed all three levels of the CFA program and am currently completing the required work experience.
What do you think equips you to do this job properly?
- My eagerness to learn and develop.
- My problem solving skills.
- My affinity for numbers.
- My academic qualifications gives me a different perspective to most of the other team members – its added diversity to our thinking processes.
What do you love about investing?
- The fact the industry and markets are dynamic – no day is the same.
- The breadth of my role in quantitative analysis for Northstar is literally infinite.
- Boredom is never an option – learning is perpetual.
What do you find the most challenging part of your role?
- I am the only quants analyst at Northstar, the rest of the team are fundamental research analysts – this means I’m busy and in demand from the portfolio managers. Time management is critical to be highly effective.
- I must add, being in demand exposes me to all our portfolio managers – I consider this a real advantage as I learn from each of them.
Why do you think clients will do well at Northstar?
- Northstar has family values, which encourages everyone to work as a team for the benefit of the company rather than for individual wealth. This is important – we have seen in the market this year what greed does to various other listed companies and asset managers.
- Our clients come first, again embedding the values for a successful company without greed.
- We all share a real passion for investing.