Why us?

We aim to deliver absolute returns through a flexible asset allocation framework to embrace growth and management of downside risk to protect capital
Diverse skill set Our team has a diverse skill set with more than 60 years’ investment experience. We embrace diversity of opinion as a competitive advantage.
Multi-dimensional framework We use a multi-dimensional framework to identify risks and opportunities across the global investment landscape to inform investment decisions.
A wide ranging toolkit We exploit a wide universe of asset classes and uncorrelated return sources when investing.
Proactive risk management We apply a risk- based approach to asset allocation to ensure a smoother return profile than traditional balanced solutions.

How we invest

The team’s philosophy is anchored on three core beliefs:

  • Risk is inherent in all assets, even cash.
    • Cash delivers a poor real return in the long term, and is always denominated in a particular currency, so currency risk must be actively managed.
    • Generating long-term returns is all about managing risk. Managing risk in a portfolio requires more than simply diversifying with traditional asset classes where correlations vary in times of market stress as correlations generally converge. Preserving our clients’ capital during these market events requires a different approach to portfolio construction.
  • The concentration of risks in equities requires careful management. It is important to include a wide source of returns rather than relying on equities as the predominant growth asset.
  • Adopting a dynamic, flexible, global and active investment approach is crucial to managing the most appropriate risk-controlled multi-asset portfolios.

Our team aims to build portfolios that draw on diversified sources of return by applying a mix of strategies, assets and explicit protection mechanisms. We employ a flexible, risk-based approach to portfolio construction.

Our team

The Absolute Return team consists of senior, highly experienced, passionate investment professionals. Our senior managers bring relevant but differentiated skills drawn from their diverse backgrounds to the team. Differences of opinion and perspective are actively encouraged and accommodated. This is the bedrock on which our philosophy and thinking is built. It is a significant element that makes our team different from any other.

Together, the members of the portfolio management team bring more than 60 years’ experience. Each manager contributes specialist expertise to provide a truly diverse, global and flexible asset allocation offering.

Marius Oberholzer heads the team and has over 20 years’ global investment experience. He has worked in London and Asia, where he successfully managed investments during the global financial crisis. His experience and perspective supports the global, multi-asset, cross-disciplinary strategy the team employs.

Our competitive edge

We believe our edge comes from our combination of cross-asset, cross-disciplinary experience, research and thinking. We have a proactive approach to risk management, adopt a multi-dimensional framework and source returns from a wide toolkit.

Proactive risk management

Our portfolios are deliberately designed to be very liquid, allowing us to be flexible and proactive in our risk management. Risk management is integral to our investment process, so we construct portfolios on a marginal contribution to risk basis. We start our portfolio construction by setting clear risk parameters that are deliberate and not an afterthought.

Multi-faceted process

Our multi-dimensional framework enables us to identify risks and opportunities across the global investment landscape. Our framework includes several dimensions and is not solely valuation-focused. This allows us to draw on a pool of possible opportunities offering different risks, asset classes, geographies and sectors. As a result, our portfolio process is less correlated to traditional multi-asset funds. We believe this is especially important for SA where the opportunity set is narrow and local markets are often driven by global dynamics.

We evaluate our performance not only on a pure return basis but, more importantly, on a risk-adjusted basis. How much risk did we take to generate the returns? Our aim in the medium term is to deliver high-quality returns to our investors as measured by the Sharpe Ratio*. 

A wider toolkit

We take a broad view of markets and use the market-implied pricing indicated by a broad array of instruments to interrogate our views. Then we undertake a scenario-based tactical asset allocation process, taking into account a wide range of possible eventualities that could affect markets and the consequent implication for specific assets, their volatility and in some cases correlations. This process forces us to factor in alternate outcomes and contrary views. It gives us a distinct advantage in managing risk and makes our process dynamic and versatile in an ever-changing market environment

*The Sharpe ratio is an industry measure to determine the excess returns earned relative to the amount of risk taken in the process


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Fund information and Fact sheets

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      Fact sheet Select
      STANLIB Absolute Plus Fund Moderate 5 Absolute Returns Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Balanced Cautious Fund Moderately conservative 3 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Balanced Fund Moderately aggressive 5 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Income Fund Conservative 1 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      1NVEST ALBI (non-TR) Index Tracker Fund Moderately conservative 1 Fixed Income Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST ALSI 40 Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Capped Property Index Tracker Fund Aggressive 5 Listed Property Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Global Government Bond Index Feeder ETF Moderately conservative 3 Fixed Income Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST Global Government Bond Index Feeder Fund Moderately conservative 3 Fixed Income Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST Global REIT Index Feeder ETF Aggressive 5 Listed Property Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST Global REIT Index Feeder Fund Aggressive 5 Listed Property Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST High Equity Passive Balanced Fund of Funds Aggressive 5 Multi-Asset Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Index Fund (SWIX) Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Inflation Linked Bond Index Tracker Fund Moderately conservative 1 Fixed Income Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Low Equity Passive Balanced Fund of Funds Moderate 3 Multi-Asset Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST MSCI World Index Feeder ETF Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST MSCI World Index Feeder Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST Quants Fund Moderately aggressive 5 Multi-Asset Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST S&P500 Index Feeder ETF Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST S&P500 Index Feeder Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST S&P500 Info Tech Index Feeder ETF Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST S&P500 Info Tech Index Feeder Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Offshore Individual
      1NVEST SA Property Exchange Traded Fund Aggressive 5 Listed Property Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Sector Neutral Growth and Quality Index Tracker Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Sector Neutral Momentum Index Tracker Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Sector Neutral Value Index Tracker Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Swix 40 Exchange Traded Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      1NVEST Top 40 Exchanged Traded Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Index and quantitative investments Local Individual
      Lesotho Unit Trust Conservative 5 Listed Property Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Fundisa Fund Conservative 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      Standard Bank Namibia CashPlus Fund Conservative 3 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Namibia Flexible Property Income Fund Moderate 5 Listed Property Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Namibia Income Fund Conservative 1 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Namibia Inflation Plus Fund Conservative 5 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Namibia Managed Fund Moderate 5 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Namibia Managed Fund Moderate 5 Multi-Asset Institutional Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Institutional
      Standard Bank Namibia Money Market Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Swaziland Managed Fund Moderately conservative 3 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      Standard Bank Swaziland Managed Fund Moderately conservative 3 Multi-Asset Institutional Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Institutional
      Standard Bank Swaziland Money Market Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Absolute Plus Proposition Moderate 5 Absolute Returns Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Africa Equity Feeder Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Africa Equity Proposition Ex South Africa Moderate 1 Equity Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Aggressive Income Fund Moderate 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Balanced Cautious Proposition Moderately conservative 3 Multi-Asset Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Bond Fund Moderate 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Botswana Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Botswana Income Fund Moderately conservative 5 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Botswana Managed Prudential Fund Moderate 5 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Botswana Money Market Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Cash Trust Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Core Bond Proposition Moderate 3 Fixed Income Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Corporate Money Market Proposition Conservative 1 Cash Solutions All Single-manager investments Local All
      STANLIB Corporate Money Market Proposition Conservative 1 Money Market Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Domestic Balanced Proposition Moderate Multi-Asset Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Enhanced Yield Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Enhanced Yield Proposition Moderate 1 Cash Solutions All Single-manager investments Local All
      STANLIB Equity Proposition Aggressive 7 Equity Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Euro Cash Fund Conservative 7 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB European Equity Feeder Fund Aggressive 7 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB European Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB European Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Extra Income Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Extra Income Proposition Conservative 1 Fixed Income Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Extra Income Proposition Conservative 1 Cash Solutions All Single-manager investments Local All
      STANLIB Flexible Income Fund Moderately conservative 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Global Aggressive Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Balanced Cautious Feeder Fund Moderately aggressive 3 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Balanced Cautious Fund Moderate 7 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Balanced Cautious Fund Aggressive 7 Multi-Asset Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Global Balanced Feeder Fund Moderately aggressive 3 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Balanced Fund Moderately aggressive 7 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Balanced Fund Aggressive 7 Multi-Asset Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Global Balanced Proposition Moderate 5 Multi-Asset Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Global Bond Feeder Fund Aggressive 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Bond Fund Moderately conservative 7 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Bond Fund Aggressive 7 Fixed Income Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Global Emerging Markets Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Emerging Markets Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Global Equity Feeder Fund Aggressive 5 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Property Feeder Fund Aggressive 3 Listed Property Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Property Fund Moderately aggressive 7 Listed Property Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Global Property Fund Moderately aggressive 7 Listed Property Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB High Alpha Global Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Income Fund Trust Moderate 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Income Proposition Conservative 1 Fixed Income Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Income Proposition Conservative 1 Cash Solutions All Single-manager investments Local All
      STANLIB Inflation Plus 5% Fund Moderate 5 Absolute Returns Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Institutional Money Market Proposition Conservative 1 Fixed Income Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB International Property Proposition Moderately aggressive 7 Listed Property Institutional Single-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Kenya Balanced Fund Moderate 3 Multi-Asset Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Kenya Bond Fund Moderate 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Kenya Equity Fund Aggressive 1 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Kenya Money Market Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Lesotho Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Lesotho Income Fund Conservative 1 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Lesotho Money Market Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Individual
      STANLIB Medical Investment Proposition Moderate 5 Absolute Returns Institutional Single-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Money Market Fund Conservative 1 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Absolute Income Fund Absolute Returns Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Balanced Fund Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Balanced Fund Multi-Asset Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Bond Fund Fixed Income Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Bond Fund Fixed Income Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Defensive Balanced Fund Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Defensive Balanced Fund Multi-Asset Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Diversified Equity Fund of Funds Equity Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Diversified Equity Fund of Funds Equity Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Enhanced Yield Fund Money Market Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Enhanced Yield Fund Money Market Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Flexible Property Fund Listed Property Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Global Bond Fund Fixed Income Individual Multi-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Global Bond Fund Equity Institutional Multi-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Global Equity Feeder Fund Equity Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Global Equity Fund Equity Individual Multi-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Global Equity Fund Equity Individual Multi-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Global Equity Fund Equity Institutional Multi-manager investments Offshore Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager High Equity Fund of Funds Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Low Equity Fund of Funds Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Medium Equity Fund of Funds Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Medium-High Equity Fund of Funds Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager NCIS Alternatives Qualified Fund of Hedge Funds Conservative Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager NCIS Multi-Strategy Retail Hedge Fund Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager NCIS Private Assets Qualified Hedge Fund Conservative Multi-asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Property Fund Listed Property Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Real Return Fund Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Real Return Fund Multi-Asset Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager SA Equity Fund Equity Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager SA Equity Fund Equity Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Shari'ah Balanced Fund of Funds Multi-Asset Individual Multi-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Multi-Manager Shari'ah Balanced Fund of Funds Multi-Asset Institutional Multi-manager investments Local Institutional
      STANLIB Offshore America Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Property Income Fund Aggressive 3 Listed Property Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Prudential Bond Fund Moderate 3 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB SA Equity Fund Aggressive 7 Equity Individual Single-manager investments Local Individual
      STANLIB Sterling Cash Fund Conservative 7 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB Uganda Fixed Income Fund Moderate Fixed Income Institutional Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Institutional
      STANLIB Uganda Money Market Fund Moderate Fixed Income Institutional Single-manager investments Rest of Africa Institutional
      STANLIB US Dollar Cash Fund Conservative 7 Money Market Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual
      STANLIB USD Currency Fund of Funds Aggressive 1 Fixed Income Individual Single-manager investments Offshore Individual