The paper explains how multi-asset investment possibly helping to improve the investment strategy and how the team constructs objective-based portfolios for clients under different market environment. View for more details.

Executive Summary

First State Multi-Assets capabilities date back to 1995 with our flagship offering in Australia. In 2011, the current senior Multi-Asset Solutions team members led by Epco van der Lende joined First State, which is a team of senior multi-assets investors who have worked together for over 20 years, and expanded our Objective-Based Investing solutions to international investors globally. 

The broader MAS team has on average 13 years of relevant experience, managing a range of objective-based and multi-asset strategies across geographies on behalf of a diverse range of clients, which include some of the world’s largest strategic investors, pension and insurance funds and sovereign wealth funds. 

Our Multi-Asset strategy is defined by the following characteristics:

––Flexible and dynamic: Our strategy is unconstrained for the purpose of alpha and beta generation and when combined with a robust risk focus minimises the likelihood of the portfolio not meeting its objectives. We blend advanced long-term strategic modelling of asset classes with shorter-term dynamic views in response to market and economic developments:  

1) Neutral Asset Allocation: anchoring the medium to long term absolute risk/return profile and corresponding allocations
2) Dynamic Asset Allocation: adding additional value by anticipating dynamically on short to medium term opportunities in financial markets

––Customised objective-based portfolios: Depending on the desired outcome, we leverage one or both of the above asset allocation engines to customise objective-based portfolios. Our approach is consistent and disciplined, with a focus to deliver on client’s objectives. 

 ––Qualitative investment ideas, quantitatively verified and qualitatively implemented: Our investment process utilises our qualitative insights and investment ideas and verifies them through quantitative techniques. Given the breadth and scope of the investable universe there is a need for quantitative rigor; it also plays an important role in counteracting cognitive biases. 

––Internally generated research: Research spans all elements of our teams’ activities and is the basis of portfolio design and implementation. We believe that all research should be developed internally and not be dependent on third party. As such, all our tools and models are proprietary, and our scientific research process is designed to leverage our edge.

––Fully discretionary, not “fund wrapping”: Our approach focuses on efficient implementation across a diversified mix of asset classes. This opens the door to dynamic asset allocation, providing high liquidity and low transaction costs along with efficient implementation.


Meeting our clients’ needs requires diversity of thought, a coherent investment process and diligent execution. We believe the proven ability to marry multiple, sometimes conflicting, client objectives is a true differentiator and competitive advantage for our MAS team.


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