Claire Rentzke, chief investment officer at 27four. Picture: Supplied
Claire Rentzke, chief investment officer at 27four. Picture: Supplied

If someone came to you tomorrow with R100m to invest in just one company, which would it be?

As a multimanager the thought of picking a single stock goes against every diversification bone in my body. If it had to be an SA stock then it would be Woolies. It’s made a few strategic errors but it’s not going anywhere and the business is solid. If it has to be a global stock then Alphabet. It continues to generate heaps of cash and reinvent itself.

What’s the wisest thing you could tell your 20-year-old self that you didn’t know when you started out?

Every month buy at least one share. Whatever you can afford.

What was your first job? And how much were you paid?

I worked for an investor relations company earning R5,000 a month. After my medical aid premium I probably only had enough money for petrol.

If you could fix one thing in SA today, what would it be?

If we could just fix economic growth then the spin-off benefits will be huge, but that is a multiyear story with many broken underlying parts. Policy certainty is a major factor because we desperately need to unlock confidence to stimulate investment. On a more personal level, everyone needs to look a little closer to home and "be the change in the world that you want to see".

Who do you admire in the investment community, and why?

It definitely would be our CEO, Fatima Vawda, because she has built a strong successful business and career in an industry that I know is incredibly hard for women.

Outside 27four it would have to be Andrew Canter from Futuregrowth. Despite building a hugely successful franchise he has always taken a stand for what he believes and acted accordingly.

Big Tech or old-fashioned industrial stalwart?

Call me boring but old-fashioned industrial stalwart. I love technology and the excitement of how it is changing the world, but that doesn’t mean it makes a good investment.

If you weren’t a fund manager, what would your dream job be?

I’d probably like to be the quintessential mad scientist.

What’s the worst investment mistake you’ve made?

Not filling up on SA bonds after Nenegate. In hindsight it was such a good buying opportunity but at the time it was just too scary to contemplate.

What’s the best investment you’ve ever made?

The best investments I’ve made are probably the ones I have avoided. What really destroys value is the investments that result in significant drawdowns and impairment of capital.

What is your greatest extravagance?

Coffee and chocolate.

SA or offshore?

SA, because it just offers so much more value. Diversification is important, but when your liabilities are in rands then being able to look at local opportunities can add significant value to your portfolio.

Facebook, Twitter or Instagram?

A little bit of Twitter, but I don’t do Facebook or Instagram at all. I have a feeling that social media may end up harming society more than it benefits it. Life is not just about the Instagrammable moments.

How much of a portfolio should be for the wildcard picks?

If it is discretionary money then definitely have a punt on a few wild cards and you can take up to a quarter of your portfolio in these low-probability, high-payoff picks.

Art, wine, rare books or cars?

Art. It’s beautiful to look at, is a great store of value and is very easy to transport.

Do you cycle?

No. I’m terribly frightened by the thought of having to wear so much Lycra.

Would you buy or rent your primary home?

Buy. It may not be the investment with the best returns you’ll ever make, but why pay someone else’s bond? Over time the capital value will increase and income increases and inflation will reduce your mortgage payments, whereas rental payments will only escalate.