South Africa’s first truly global discretionary fund manager (DFM), Cogence, announces Jonel Matthee-Ferreira at its first Chief Executive Officer effective 2 January 2024. Cogence is the first South African DFM making leading global fund research and insights available to local advisers through a powerful collaboration with BlackRock, Discovery and RisCura.
Matthee-Ferreira has almost 20 years of senior management experience in asset management, including more than a decade heading leading multi-managers. She joins Cogence from Sanlam Multi-Management, and held a similar role at Absa Multi-Management. Prior to that, she held the position of Chief Investment Officer at Metropolitan Multi-Managers.
Discovery Invest CEO, Kenny Rabson has been overseeing the operations at Cogence since it was launched in August last year.
“Jonel is the right leader for Cogence,” said Rabson. “We searched extensively for someone of Jonel’s calibre. She comes with commanding asset management leadership experience. Her strategic and business development skills will help build Cogence into the first of its kind global South Africa.”
Cogence bolstered its leadership team with the recent appointment of Dimitri Theo as head of sales.
“I am very excited to be joining the Cogence team,” said Matthee-Ferreira “I have admired Discovery as an iconic South African brand and its exceptional business model. I am honoured to lead the talented team that has worked hard over the past 12 months to build Cogence from the ground up.”
As head of ABSA Multi-Management, Matthee-Ferreira grew the business from R5 billion in assets under management (AUM) to over R60bn in AUM and assets under administration (AUA) at its peak.
Pursuant to her employment agreement, Matthee-Ferreira has commenced the customary ‘gardening leave’ with Sanlam Multi-Manager until she commences employment with Cogence on 2 January 2024.
Matthee-Ferreira holds an AMP from IMD Business School, Lusanne in Switzerland, an MBA in Financial Management from Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School in Belgium and a B Comm Honours in Business Management (Cum Laude) from the University of Stellenbosch.
“Jonel will be instrumental in leading the expansion of Cogence with the trusted asset managers and investment houses in South Africa,” adds Rabson.
Cogence global investment platform now available on Allan Gray
Cogence’s ongoing commitment to be accessible to all independent financial advisers, regardless of the platforms they use, has taken another step forward with its recent partnership with Allan Gray. Already available on some of the largest investment platform in South Africa, namely Discovery Invest, NinetyOne and Glacier, and now adds Allan Gray to the list.
Local investors invested through the Cogence platform can take advantage of the DFM’s market leading capability to invest offshore. Through Cogence, South African advisers can help their clients achieve global diversification in their investments, in funds and model portfolios that are not well represented in the local market. These include, energy, technology, utilities, fourth industrial revolution industrials and global pharma and healthcare.
“The presence of our funds and model portfolios on Allan Gray’s prestigious and trusted investment platform means that a much larger segment of South African advisers and their clients can now access Cogence’s market-leading research and allocation ability on a platform on which they already operate,” says Rabson.
As Cogence expands across even more platforms and adds fund-of-fund options, “local advisers using Cogence will enjoy the advantage of consistent fees regardless of where their clients access us,” says Rabson.
Apart from ensuring that advisers treat customers fairly from a pricing perspective, being available on multiple platforms also helps advisers avoid the costs associated with moving clients between platforms. Finally, in addition to providing access to BlackRock’s global fund research and insight, Cogence gives South African advisers access to Aladdin Wealth™, BlackRock’s industry-leading investment and risk management technology. “This helps advisers tick the value-for-money box from a fees perspective since BlackRock and Aladdin Wealth™ allow them to deliver a lot more for the fees they charge,” adds Rabson.
“We aim to effortlessly equip South African advisers with unmatched diversification across multiple managers, investment styles, strategies and asset classes by showing up on the platforms that they and their clients already use.”