Towers Watson appoints 3 senior investment specialists

07 January 2016

Towers Watson has strengthened its global hedge fund research and advisory capabilities with the addition of Aongus O’Gorman and Victoria Vodolazschi as Senior Investment Consultant, and Abbas Alighanbari as Senior Investment Analyst.

Prior to joining Towers Watson, Aongus O'Gorman worked as a Managing Director at Round Tower Solutions for almost six years. At the boutique consulting firm, he worked across the fields of investment governance, process improvement, and product management. Prior to this, between 2002 and 2009, he was a Director at QIC, where his responsibilities included managing the firm’s manager alpha programme. He started his career as Fund manager for the IIU in 1995, a role he held for six years. O’Gorman holds a Masters in Business Studies and a Bachelor of Commerce, both from University College Dublin.

O’Gorman joins Towers Watson’s Sydney office, bringing his more than 20 years’ experience in the investment management industry to the firm. His new role, as Senior Investment Consultant, will see him take responsibility for the firm’s liquid diversifying strategies in Australia, as well as broader client responsibilities.

Aongus O Gorman | Victoria Vodolazschi

Victoria Vodolazschi joins Towers Watson from her Strategy Specialist role at PivotalPath, where she worked as a consultant in the evaluation of hedge fund managers for just over a year. Prior to joining PivotalPath in 2014, she worked at the Northern Trust Corporation for more than seven years, in the role of Director of Hedge Fund Investments. Previous roles include a short stint as Senior Vice-President of Hedge Fund Manager Selection at Asset Alliance Corporation in 2006, Vice-President of Hedge Fund Research at Bainbridge Partners between 2002 and 2005 and Assistant Vice-President of Hedge Fund Research at Tremont Capital Management between 2001 and 2002. Vodolazschi started her career at Bear Stearns & Company in 1997 as an Investment Banking Analyst, before moving to JPMorgan Chase in 1999 as an Investment Banker. Vodolazschi holds an MBA from the Stern School of Business, New York, a BA in Economics from Trinity College-Hartford, and is a CFA Charter holder.

Victoria Vodolazschi joins Towers Watson’s New York City office, as a Senior Investment Consultant. In her new role she will leverage her more than 15 years’ experience in finance and investment strategy for the firm, supporting clients on long/short equity, macro and systematic strategies.

Luba Nikulina, Towers Watson

Abbas Alighanbari started his career as a Junior Trader at APA Capital in 2012, after which he moved to International Asset Management (IAM) in 2013 to take on the role of Investment Analyst for almost three years. At IAM, his responsibilities included research into a wide range of hedge fund strategies, as well as assisting in the management of client portfolios totalling $4.1 billion. Alighanbari holds a BSc in Mathematical Science focused on Finance and Economics from the City University London, and an MSc in Finance from the Cass Business School.

Alighanbari will strengthen Towers Watson in London, and will, as a Senior Investment Analyst, provide the firm’s clients with a range of hedge fund strategies, initially working on long/short equity.

Commenting on the appointments, Luba Nikulina, Global Head of Manager Research at Towers Watson, says: “Aongus, Victoria and Abbas are very welcome additions to our team at a time when these investments are very popular among institutional investors seeking to diversify, notably into liquid alternatives […] Our new colleagues have significant prior experience and will help us expand our capabilities in finding alpha and getting access to the skill premium across a broad range of strategies.”


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Rapid growth sees Quantum Advisory promote trio of partners

18 April 2019

Three senior level consultants have been boosted to the rank of Partner at Quantum Advisory, as the firm works to meet heightened levels of client demand. Aled Edwards, Amanda Burdge and Chris Heirene become Partners as long-time Quantum member Rob Davies retires in May after 15 years as a Partner at the firm.

Founded in 2000, Quantum Advisory provides pension and employee benefits services to employers, scheme trustees and members, with five offices across the UK. The firm has enjoyed exponential growth in recent years, following a number of major client wins and booming demand for its services. It opened a new office in Bristol in 2016 to service the South West and in 2017 relocated its Cardiff office to a larger site within the Welsh capital to house the increased workforce. More recently, Quantum relocated its Amersham, Birmingham and London offices to more spacious premises in the centre of both cities to cope with demand.

The financial services consultancy, which employs 115 people across the UK, has promoted three senior team members to Partner, as part of its wider growth plans. The firm has moved Aled Edwards from Principal Consultant & Actuary, while Amanda Burdge has ascended from Principal Investment Consultant. Chris Heirene, former IT Manager, has also joined the ten current Partners at Quantum.

Aled Edwards most recently managed the actuarial team within Quantum’s Cardiff office as well as providing technical training for all staff. He boasts more than 17 years of pensions experience. He started his career as an Actuary at Jardine Lloyd Thompson’s Bristol wing, before joining Quantum in 2011. Edwards is also the President of the Welsh Actuarial Society (WAS), which supports actuaries and actuarial students living or working in Wales.

Rapid growth sees Quantum Advisory promote trio of Partners

Amanda Burdge joined Quantum’s team in 2001, as one of the fledgling firm’s first employees. Most recently she was a Principal Investment Consultant with the firm, and with more than a quarter of a century’s experience in the sector, she is responsible for providing investment advice to many of Quantum’s key clients with both defined benefit and defined contribution schemes. Prior to her time with Quantum, Burdge spent two years as a consultant with SBJ Benefit Consultants (now Capita), and three years with Tesco Pension Trustees. She currently sits on the Regulation Committee for the Pensions Management Institute.

Chris Heirene initially worked with Quantum as an IT Consultant with Teamwork Technology Services and then UES for over five years, before finally joining the firm itself in 2011. He is now responsible for Quantum’s IT systems across all of its offices, including the network and core server infrastructure which supports the business. Heirene is heavily involved in utilising IT to improve and build upon the processes in place throughout Quantum.

David Deidun, Partner at Quantum Advisory, said of the promotions, “This is a very exciting time for Quantum. The recent round of promotions fully recognise the hard work and dedication shown by the three, all of whom go above and beyond for the company. I’ve no doubt that Aled, Amanda and Chris will settle into their new roles with ease and look forward to working together to grow Quantum even further.”

The news comes as Rob Davies retires in May, after spending fifteen years as a Partner at Quantum. A qualified actuary, Davies was instrumental in setting up Quantum’s Investment Division, specialising in aiding clients with their investment strategies. He will remain with the company on a part-time consultancy basis, while working with several clients in the Fiduciary Manager area.