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Ross Ciesla says he’s seen the team at Veritas grow over the past year, but hires have been carefully selected. ‘We like bright people who enjoy helping each other grow and improve,’ he says, ‘much like Lennon and McCartney worked as a cohesive unit to constantly help better themselves. We like that model.’ The strategy has proved successful: Veritas now has £2.7 billion in AUM, rising from £1.8 billion in 2017.
Ciesla says a good investment manager ‘cannot be siloed’ in their thinking, as ‘some industries are being fundamentally rewired and challenges met, for instance in relation to sustainability in the energy and transportation sectors’.
Nevertheless, he argues it is important not to be drawn into fads: even if his team look at ETFs with interest, he questions the liquidity of the underlying instruments and asks the question: ‘Do holders really understand the risks?’ With the markets potentially ‘at a tipping point’, an investment manager who understands the trends of the future is a valuable commodity.
The former director of Newton told Spear’s last year that because Veritas’s focus is on clients’ protection, they can insulate themselves from turbulent markets. Indeed, his team saw revenues jump during the crisis.