Meet our Board of Directors

The Board of AGBA is made up of experienced advisers and industry representatives who are passionate about goals based advice and delivering better outcomes to investors. AGBA greatly appreciates the time and effort they put in to help the industry in general, particularly as their time is given on a purely voluntary basis.

Practitioner Members

Matthew Walker

Chairman

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Matthew has been as a specialist financial planner since 1991 and has extensive experience in providing top quality advice to successful individuals such as senior corporate executives, professionals and self-employed business executives. His plain-English approach to complicated financial and regulatory subjects has won him a loyal client following.

WLM successfully introduced an end-to-end goals based advice process and DAA portfolios to their clients, who have all embraced the approach as being more meaningful and relevant to them individually. As the advice conversation has evolved to be even more focused on their personal needs it has greatly improved client satisfaction and lead to increased referrals and business generation.

WLM uses the Dynamic Asset Consulting Goals Based Portfolios which are typically CPI + portfolios  implemented via an MDA platform.

Matthew’s experience with implementing goals based investing with his clients and willingness to help others in the industry makes him a valuable contributor to AGBA and the evolution of the advice industry in Australia.

Fergus Hardingham

Director

Fergus started his financial services career in 2000 and has as a result experienced two large market downturns, the TECHBUST and then the GFC and he has lived to tell the tale. These experiences, especially the GFC have shaped how FM Financial Solutions advises their clients – that being with a strong focus on understanding the RISKS and MANAGING DOWNSIDE. The basis of our investment philosophy is that better outcomes for clients result from trying to increase the certainty of future investment outcomes or returns.

Greater certainty is mainly an outcome of reducing the level of risk (particularly volatility or the variability of returns), and by reducing the size of capital drawdowns (peak-to-trough decline during a specific period of an investment, usually quoted as the percentage between the peak and the trough).

We believe, and a lot of research supports our belief, that over the longer term lower volatility portfolios will produce better outcomes for clients. In addition we do not seek to beat markets or indexes, as these have no relationship to the achievement of your personal goals and objectives. Instead when building portfolios for you we aim to achieve a target return of CPI +3% (with minimal volatility or variability of portfolio returns).

Hence when selecting investments to hold in client portfolios we are looking for investments that are not all correlated to each other (ie those which don’t all move in the same direction, particularly during an event like the GFC) and that have the ability to deploy strategies to reduce losses. Importantly we do not wish to rely on only one asset class or manager for returns and are mindful of valuation (as buying expensive assets reduces future returns).

Sarah Abood

Director

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Sarah started her career in financial services with AMP in 1989, holding diverse roles including IT analyst, technical adviser and sales manager over nine years. Sarah has continued her career in the finance world ever since, holding senior marketing and management roles with Rothschild, Westpac, BT, Colonial First State, and most recently with Fidelity International before joining Profile Financial Services as CEO in 2010.

She is passionate about financial planning and firmly believes that every Australian should have access to high quality advice to help them reach their financial goals. Sarah holds a BA from Sydney University, an MBA from MGSM, and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Profile Financial Services offers goals based advice to their clients and has implemented two CPI+ diversified portfolios, as well as sector fund and Australian Shares model portfolios, to assist clients in meeting those goals.

Stephen Furness

Director

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Stephen has more than 30 years’ experience in banking and financial services and has spent the last 18 years in private practice. Throughout this time Stephen has built an outstanding reputation for delivering high level strategic wealth management solutions to his clients, including high net worth individuals, professionals and executives. Joining MGD Wealth in 2008, he has been a driving force behind the vision for our investment portfolio offering and total wealth management philosophy.

As chair of the MGD Wealth Investment Committee, he works with investment partners and researchers to develop a leading edge investment strategy. Stephen also works closely with other MGD Wealth directors and client advisers to deliver robust investment portfolio solutions to clients.

MGD Wealth offers goals based advice to their clients and has three absolute return diversified portfolios to assist in meeting those goals.

Industry Associates

Andrew Fairweather

Director

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Andrew has over 25 years’ experience in the financial services market specialising in funds management. He commenced his career in retail funds distribution for Prudential, working in similar roles nationally for JP Morgan Investment Management and Salomon Smith Barney Asset Management before joining AMP limited where in his last role, he headed the Business Development function for AMP’s largest sales division, the Savings and Retirement unit.

Following this, Andrew became the Chief Executive Officer of Australian listed financial services company MMC Contrarian, responsible for building the funds management incubation model, funds management M&A and developing fund manager startups. Andrew’s most recent role has been as the Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director of Multi Asset and Alternatives specialist Select Asset Management. At both MMC and Select, Andrew was a member of each firm’s Investment Committee. Andrew is the former President of the Sydney University Conservatorium of Music Foundation where he successfully launched a major endowment fund, supports an Australia wide student composition scholarship and is an adjunct lecturer in Marketing at the Australian Graduate School of Management.

Winston Capital offers a number of absolute return products that suit may goals based investing portfolios.

Damien Crowley

Director

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Damian Crowley is the Director of Distribution for Pengana and has responsibility for the distribution of Pengana’s funds in Australia and offshore across multiple channels and client segments. Damian joined Pengana in July 2011 and has over 25 years’ experience in financial services distribution. Prior to joining Pengana, Damian worked at Perpetual Investments for 17 years most recently as General Manager Distribution for the past 12 years.

Before working at Perpetual Damian worked for Prudential Assurance. Damian has a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of NSW and Graduate Diploma in Applied Finance and Investment(FINSIA).

Pengana offers a number of absolute return products that may suit goals based investing portfolios.

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