Solutions

OUR CONSULTING SERVICES


SUMMA Limited provides insight of unusual breadth and depth across the institutional investment field.

We deliver a superior perspective by harnessing decades of hands-on, senior-level acquaintance with investment practice.

This combines an insider's view of the buy-side at top pension and sovereign wealth funds with extensive knowledge of the sell-side within leading investment banks and asset management firms, working on behalf of a blue-chip global clientele.

SUMMA Limited offers strategy, consulting and expert witness services across all major asset classes, techniques and styles.  

This exploits our privileged, first-hand, acquaintance with critical investment functions, governance and compliance among the world's leading investors. It is, additionally, informed by a commitment to continuing professional education and research.


PRACTICE AREAS


BOARD, EXECUTIVE AND EXPERT SERVICES

Our CEO has been a director of investment company boards since 1989, including at a large US investment bank and as a Global Partner in the largest quoted European asset manager, where he took his team in 1994. 


Board Advisory

Our CEO has been investment adviser to boutique asset management boards, including Arlington Capital, a pioneer in European corporate engagement, Compass Financial Services (BVI), a US$100 billion asset advisor and hedge fund of funds, and MENA Ventures, a Dublin-based transaction placement company. 


Transactions

Our CEO has provided discreet placement advice on numerous projects of all sorts across multiple asset classes and industries for deals of up to US$20 billion in value.

In 2008 he was involved in building a third-party marketing platform in Bahrain.

He has also been retained, for example, to source funding for the buy-out of one of the oldest European private equity buy-out companies as well as that to restructure a US$600 million European Investment Trust.


Product Development

Throughout his career the CEO of SUMMA Limited has been associated with innovation at the confluence of finance theory and information technology, with which to deliver superior product solutions in response to client requirements.

Examples include: specialist equity style rotation, tactical asset allocation, active currency management, derivative overlays, controlled portfolio restructuring, stratified index optimisation, consensus indexation, option substitution and synthetic indexing.


Marketing

Our CEO has always taken the view that marketing is too important to leave to the marketing department.  Striking a mutually profitable balance between client need and business competence is the purpose of any enterprise, it is the wellspring of innovation.

We have extensive experience of the marketing and sales value-chain across clienteles, products and geographies.

For the firms with which he has been associated our CEO has retained or won numerous blue-chip clients in competition.


Change Management

No one knows better than an investment manager that even worthwhile projects can look like a failure half way through. It takes thought-leadership, stewardship, planning, virtuosity and grit to "get over the hump".

Throughout his career our CEO has been restless to streamline and raise the game of the organisations with which he has worked, by embracing new ideas and taking a coherent, joined-up approach to delivery. 

He has often provided the catalyst for lasting change, even in challenging, complex and multicultural environments.


Project Execution

Our CEO knows about investment project delivery from both sides. Among other things, he led a transfer of undertakings from the investment business that he managed at a leading US investment bank to Europe's largest quoted asset manager - one of two dozen prospective buyers.

He did this in under six months from begining to end, transferring several billion dollars of client assets and preserving the integrity of the team so that it endured as a standalone unit.  Its backoffice technology was adopted globally across the new firm.


Expert Testimony

The CEO of SUMMA Limited is a practising member of The Academy of Experts (TAE).

He has been retained under Civil Procedure Rules Practice Regulation 35 (Experts and Assessors) to testify in the High Court. 

SUMMA Limited was called on for initial, supplemental and joint expert reports, as well as court testimony on investment suitability, in the 2016 Chancery Division case of The Libyan Investment Authority v Goldman Sachs, before Lady Justice Rose.


PENSION AND SWF CONSULTING

SUMMA Limited provides comprehensive asset, strategy and change management advice covering the creation, organisation and management of pension, endowment, sovereign and other wealth funds.


Best Practices

SUMMA Limited has extensive experience in this field. It recently advised on best practices for a Middle Eastern state development fund, for which consultants are designing a comprehensive blueprint to assimilate multiple, regional, legacy organisations to an entirely new, unitary and ambitious, national development vision. 


Sovereign Wealth

Our CEO has an unusual breadth of senior-level experience inside sovereign funds at various stages of development from inception to maturity.

In the Gulf, he was Senior Investment Adviser to the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority for six years. He had broad responsibilities for asset allocation, risk management, weekly investment committee proposals and performance measurement, as well as oversight of manager selection, departmental restructuring, compliance, policies, procedures and technology. 

In Asia, he was subsequently adviser to the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation in both Singapore and London, principally involved in investment policy and strategy, with external funds and on the Alternatives Investment Committee.


Sovereign Wealth Fund Start-Ups

On the cusp of strong growth from natural gas, Qatar created the Qatar Investment Authority in 2006. Shortly after its inception our CEO became Head of Group Asset Management, reporting directly to the board, as well as being appointed Chairman of the Investment Committee. 

Subsequently, in 2008 he was invited to become the first senior employee at the Emirates Investment Authority (EIA), itself the first SWF for the Federal Government of the UAE, where he was principal adviser and Chief Investment Officer.

The EIA was an unusual and ambitious intergenerational fund, whose diverse and extensive legacy assets comprised strategic stakes in the domestic telecoms duopoly as well as over thirty other jointly-owned GCC companies and federal UAE infrastructure.


Pension Funds

Our CEO has personally managed all kinds of portfolios for over 50 pension funds as well as for corporations and local authorities across Europe, Asia and the United States. See our Credentials for more details. 

He was an early pioneer in liability-driven, derivative-based, style management and controlled portfolio restructuring techniques for mature funds. He also tailored tactical asset allocation, stratified optimisation, consensus indexation and currency overlay products for a sophisticated global clientele.

Prior to the 1987 Crash he protected client portfolios by executing the largest synthetic, stock substitution, transactions in traded options then seen in the London market.


Pension Fund Start-Up

In 2001 our CEO was instrumental in the establishment of the national pension fund for a MENA state, designed to assimilate several dozen legacy funds to a single, harmonised best practice platform.

This entailed organising RFI, RFP, vendor selection, financial analyses, actuarial, asset consulting, project management and many other components to effect a seamless asset transition processes.


Portfolio Restructuring

Markets do not stop to accommodate necessary organisational change and neither should the apparatus of performance measurement and risk management.

The CEO of SUMMA Limited has transitioned portfolios for corporations like Nabisco and Dupont undergoing significant change.

He has deployed controlled portfolio restructuring techniques to do so in a way which is seamless, meets sponsor goals and affords continuity of accountability.


SUMMA Limited is able to advise on all of these and many more aspects of institutional investment management.


Please contact us for more information or for a complimentary exploratory discussion.


 


STRATEGY, RISK AND GOVERNANCE

Since 1996 our CEO has participated in or chaired the investment committees of some of the largest SWFs in MENA and Asia, overseeing classical assets as well as some of the largest buy-side alternative portfolios.


Asset Allocation

Any long-term investment endeavour is only as good as its foundations.  On reasonable assumptions of asset risk, return and sponsor risk appetite, strategic allocation latitude is surpringly constrained.  It is imperative that the exercise is properly framed and meaningful, but most of all that it is not a disconnected, isolated exercise.


Risk-Budgeting

Allocation and risk budgeting are two sides of the same coin.  Together they should consistently inform the entire investment selection and review process.  Proper benchmarking, performance measurement and risk management must express a fund's strategic goals in a way that facilitates timely exploitation of market opportunities.


Strategy

SUMMA Limited has provided strategy consulting input to numerous clients, including regular market reports for the umbrella body marketing one of the world's foremost strategic commodities.


Policy

Defining strategy goals is one thing but systematically assuring their attainment depends on coherent benchmarking, performance measurement, performance attribution and associated trade execution, style and factor analyses, together with robust provision for support and comprehensive management reporting. 


Practice

The tenets of institutional investment are often poorly elaborated, shared and understood among relevant stakeholders.

The CEO of SUMMA Limited has experience of bringing together senior professionals from diverse functions at leading funds, often in challenging circumstances.

Success depends on joined-up policy stewardship, codification of requisite front office practices and provision of appropriate tools and metrics for enterprise-wide risk and performance management.


Processes

Institutional asset management is a holistic exercise. For allocation and instrument or manager selection to be effective it is essential to harmonise and cohere the goals and processes of portfolio construction.  It is also imperative to streamline operational infrastructure and third-party platforms.  

In addition to his investment responsibilities our CEO has codified policies and processes, introduced coherent benchmarking and performance metrics and drafted codes of ethics and professional conduct.

He was de facto first chief risk officer at a major SWF and forged a cadre of senior professionals to contribute stewardship for a radical $250 million front-to-back-office infrastructure rebuild on best practice lines.


Procedures and Compliance

Our CEO draughted the General Rules governing internal and external portfolios for a leading SWF, as well as those governing personal trading, conflicts of interest and standards of ethical conduct.

Having established appropriate governance, policy, practices, processes and procedures for an investment organisation the next step is to enshrine these in a coherent platform. 


Platforms

Our CEO has advanced the use of information technology for business advantage at every stage of his career. 

He led the senior team that steered the front office components of a US$250 million best practice programme at a major SWF.

Subsequently, SUMMA Limited's first project involved similar oversight of a US$100 million global investment system process re-engineering project for the investment subsidiary of Europe's largest bank.