Wealth Manager, Deidré Valentine, speaks to Citywire.

The Woodland Wealth CFP believes an AUM or fee-based financial adviser environment is best
for client outcomes

By Tracy Benjamin


Citywire South Africa regularly profiles financial advisers and wealth managers via short Q&As.

Name: Deidré Valentine.

Firm: Woodland Wealth.

Position: Wealth manager, CFP.

Who is your favourite type of client?

Someone who sees their own financial planning and well-being as important. They should want to engage in ways of getting everything in place and therefore grow [wealth] naturally. We should have a good trust relationship so that they trust me with their planning. I also like people who are friendly and have a good sense of humour.

What is your investment philosophy?

To construct portfolios for clients using a thorough process, making sure that well-diversified portfolios can keep up with inflation and meet our clients’ required [retirement] outcomes. We believe that the price you pay for an asset is critical because that will determine your future returns.

To optimise growth potential, you need to be strategic about your investments. We sow the right seeds in the best-suited places to help grow a tree of wealth that will stand the test of time. Constant re-evaluation and nurturing pave the path towards financial stability in the long term.

We also focus on investor behaviour and try to make sure that clients understand their own biases and fears so that we can try to eliminate the risk of them making emotional financial decisions.

What keeps you awake at night?

I try to focus on things that can be controlled. I therefore do not tend to lie awake [worrying] at night too much, as it does not necessarily change the outcome of matters. I also know that we manage client portfolios honestly and diligently, so I don’t have concerns.

However, every now and then I think about returns, inflation, governments and what the world will look like ten years from now. We have to make sure that we keep up with the changing environment, if necessary, but also ensure we keep our core values and processes stable.

What are you most excited about?

I am excited about our industry; I think it has come a long way. The industry is moving in the right direction, away from a commission-driven ‘broker’ environment to an AUM or fee-based financial adviser environment, which I believe leads to better outcomes for clients.

“We need a client-first approach in the local industry.”

If you weren’t doing this job, what would you be doing?

I would be a dermatologist. I considered studying medicine while I was still at school but decided to go the mathematics and investments route. My passion, however, lies with animals. If I could do anything, I would love to be involved with animal rescue projects.

What would you like to have more time for?

I try to have a balanced life, but it would be great to have more time to try new things, or just to spend more time with family and friends. I also like to spend time on my own and enjoy reading whenever I get the time for it.

What are you reading?

I’ve been lecturing portfolio management to honours students at the University of Stellenbosch on a part-time basis, so my reading has mostly been textbook- and portfolio management-related.

I am however waiting for Morgan Housel’s new book, ‘Same as Ever: A Guide to What Never Changes,’ to be released in November. I will be reading this while I’m on the beach in Witsand during my December holiday.

What are you listening to?

I enjoy a variety of music genres. I am a country fan, and artists like Kip Moore and Jack Johnson are a constant on my playlist.

What are you watching?

Not much currently – I am not a big television and streaming viewer. I enjoyed watching ‘Yellowstone’ and more recently, ‘Beckham’, the David Beckham documentary on Netflix. I also love watching sports, so that’s mostly what’s on my watchlist over weekends.

Do you have any hidden talents?

I can pick up the guitar and play a few ‘lekker’ songs now and then. Not often enough though!

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Although all possible care has been taken in the preparation of this document, the factual correctness of the information contained herein cannot be guaranteed. This document does not constitute advice and anyone who intends to take any financial action based on this document is strongly advised to first consult with his/her personal financial advisor. Woodland Wealth is an authorised financial service provider with FSP no. 5966.

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