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Future Fund makes internal CIO appointment

  •  
By Jessica Penny
  •  
3 minute read

Australia’s sovereign wealth fund has found a new CIO after a “comprehensive global search”.

The Future Fund has announced the promotion of current deputy chief investment officer (CIO) Ben Samild to CIO.

Mr Samild has been with the fund for more than a decade, first joining in 2013 as director, debt and alternatives, following a four-year stint as head of investment strategy at LUCRF Super.

He was appointed deputy CIO for portfolio strategy in 2021 and then for portfolio construction in 2022.

According to the fund, it was during this time that Mr Samild was involved in reviewing investment strategy in light of the New Investment Order position paper that set out the Future Fund’s thinking on the changing global environment.

Now as CIO, he will succeed chief executive officer Raphael Arndt, who has been the acting CIO since June 2022.

Chair of the Future Fund board of guardians, Peter Costello, said Mr Samild’s appointment signifies the depth of talent within the funds investment team.

“Ben brings a strong understanding of the Future Fund as a long-term investor. He has played an important role in supporting the board’s focus on generating returns while managing risk and I am pleased that he will now step up to lead the investment program,” Mr Costello explained.

“Globally, inflation remains higher than is desirable and interest rates have continued to rise, while fiscal policy remains accommodative and productivity growth is low. This creates a challenging environment for investors and in his new role Ben will work closely with the board to navigate this environment.”

Dr Arndt commended Mr Samild’s suitability for the role.

“Ben has significantly contributed to the direction and performance of the portfolio and has driven our whole portfolio investment approach,” Dr Arndt said.

“I look forward to our strong investment performance continuing under his leadership.”

Mr Samild added that he was honoured to take on the challenge of leading the investment team.

“I am very passionate about the role the Future Fund plays and have a great deal of respect and admiration for the people who work here.”

“Having spent a significant amount of time leading the research and strategic orientation on the impact of contemporary global challenges to the investment environment, I am very excited to be able to steward the portfolio at this critical juncture,” Mr Samild concluded.

Following Mr Samild’s promotion, Hugh Murray, head of overlays, has been named acting deputy CIO for portfolio construction, while Alicia Gregory remains deputy CIO for private markets.