Risk governance

Effective risk governance frameworks should provide sufficient checks, balances and controls and have a natural fit with its host organization.

We have installed numerous boards and committees, substantiated all lines of defense and advised asset managers on regulatory-driven risk assessments, such as ICAAP and SIRA. Theoretical frameworks, like COSO and FIRM, are helpful in addressing the right topics, but in the end, successful risk management comes down to a healthy, well-equipped and risk-aware first line of defense. Therefore, AF Advisors not only focuses on designing the optimal risk governance structure but also on implementing it.


  • Reviewed, designed and implemented risk governance frameworks for several Dutch asset managers (of insurers and pension administrators) and pension funds.
  • Set up of a financial risk management framework and interim management of the financial risk function.

Fund analysis

A key driver of successful sales is the ability to clearly and consistently communicate the competitive advantages of a fund.

To be able to define your fund’s competitive advantages, it is necessary to understand both client needs and your competitive offerings. Gatekeepers and other professional buyers base their selection decisions on an evaluation of a product within its competitive landscape and have access to all product specs and presentations in the market. However, many asset managers still focus their marketing efforts on excellent and elaborate descriptions of their investment products and strategies and underestimate the added value of understanding the competition and specifics of client demand.

AF Advisors’ Competitive Analysis Framework is used to create tailored competitive analysis by identifying the relative strengths of asset managers and unique buying reasons (as opposed to unique selling points) for the strategy or product.


  • Competitive analysis reports drafted for numerous fund strategies of international asset managers.
  • Reviewed and improved fund documentation (sales presentation, factsheet and website) of fund ranges.

Manager selection

Investment management is a unique business and it is very difficult to achieve long-term exceptional results.

We believe that having investments managed by the right managers is essential to produce alpha and meet your financial and strategic goals. We all know that past performance is no indication for the future results. Manager selection and due diligence are very difficult for a variety of reasons.

First there are hundreds of managers available for investors and this number has grown dramatically over the past decades. Second, because of various styles of investing, some are typically suited for certain investment philosophies or market situations. Third, few investors have the expertise and scale to evaluate managers properly. Compounding these challenges, it can be difficult for individuals as well as organizations to have enough knowledge and time to perform thorough manager selection and due diligence.

AF Advisors is your specialist for manager selection and as a gatekeeper for the design and review of your product range and investment strategies.


  • Periodic review on manager selection criteria of the fund range offered by a Dutch bank to retail investors.
  • Selection of managers for various institutional investors, such as pension funds, insurance companies and banks.

Individual DC analysis

AF Advisors, in cooperation with Söderberg & Partners, analyses Dutch individual defined contribution products. With the label Penformance we offer a comparison tool (Penformance Beleggingstoets) to the Dutch pension advisory community. This tool analyses all Dutch individual defined contribution products on the effectiveness of the life cycle, investment policy, sustainability policy, costs, returns and reporting.


  • Developed and offered a tool (Penformance Beleggingstoets) for pension advisors that evaluates individual DC products on life cycle effectiveness and investment policy (www.penformance.nl).