Investment Forum 2023

09.15 BST Thursday 5 October 2023
Pan Pacific Hotel, London

Join the FSSA team and external guests for a discussion on Asia and the Emerging Markets, their importance to the global economy and where we see the best opportunities for investment.

We hope to see you at what promises to be an engaging and insightful event on Thursday 5 October at the Pan Pacific Hotel.





Registration and breakfast refreshments


Investment forum


Michael Stapleton


Market outlook: It’s the end of the world all over again…?!
Richard Jones

The market has become more difficult for active investors in Asia – from a China-led bull run with high levels of herd behaviour and passive flows, to fear and disbelief and a disappointing decade for stocks in the region.

But, for the FSSA team, it’s business as usual. We remain grounded in our bottom-up stock picking, putting company quality at the forefront and focusing on long-term returns amid a volatile market environment.

In this session, Richard Jones provides an Asia market review and outlook, and discusses the importance of staying true to our investment philosophy.


China: what has changed... and what remains the same
Winston Ke and Helen Chen

While the media has been replete with negative headlines on China, Winston Ke and Helen Chen present a more balanced view. China still has many attractive features, including a large universe of quality companies with capable leaders, consistent earnings growth and increasing innovation.

Despite the speed of change in this dynamic market, FSSA’s philosophy remains the same. By investing in the best companies we can find and holding them for the long term, we expect to earn attractive returns through economic and sentiment-driven cycles.


Travelling, rather than arriving, with companies in India 
Sree Agarwal and Shivika Srimal

There have been many disruptions in India over the past decade, with frequent regulatory reforms and a costly Covid-19 experience. However, the positive effects of the reforms are now being seen, with market leaders across sectors gaining rapidly from the formalisation of the economy.

As one of the world’s oldest equity markets, India has many attractive businesses with high governance standards. We believe there are a number of large companies of the future, currently hiding in small market capitalisations.

Sree Agarwal and Shivika Srimal illustrate FSSA’s investment approach with a series of examples, including how we engage with companies over the long term to assess the markers of quality.

Coffee Break

Interview with Joey Wat, CEO of Yum China
Joey Wat and Martin Lau

Join us in an engaging conversation with Joey Wat, CEO of Yum China, as she shares her experiences of managing China’s largest restaurant group.


The End of ESG
Alex Edmans

Alex Edmans is Professor of Finance at London Business School and author of ‘Grow the Pie: How Great Companies Deliver Both Profit and Purpose’. In his research paper The End of ESG, published earlier this year, he says that “all executives and investors should take [ESG factors] seriously, not just those with “sustainability” in their job title. Considering long-term factors when valuing a company isn’t ESG investing; it’s investing.”

In this thought-provoking session, Alex will discuss what he means by “The End of ESG” and the evolution of ESG from niche subfield to mainstream practice.


Panel discussion 

Panel discussion with the FSSA team, moderated by Merryn Somerset Webb.



13.00 - 14.00

Join us for lunch


Sree Agarwal

Senior Investment Analyst

Sreevardhan Agarwal is a Senior Investment Analyst at FSSA Investment Managers, part of First Sentier Investors.

Sreevardhan joined FSSA Investment Managers as a graduate in 2014 and provides research support to the portfolio managers, with a focus on Australia, India and the Southeast Asian markets. 

He is also co-manager of the FSSA Indian Subcontinent strategy and the Scottish Oriental Smaller Companies Trust. 

Sreevardhan has 8 years of investment experience. He graduated from the National University of Singapore with a management degree and a specialisation in Finance. 

Helen Chen

Portfolio Manager

Helen Chen is a Portfolio Manager at FSSA Investment Managers, part of First Sentier Investors.

Helen joined FSSA Investment Managers in 2012 and focuses on the Greater China equity markets. She is the lead manager of the FSSA China Focus strategy and the FSSA China All Cap strategy. 

Helen has 10 years of investment experience. She holds a Bachelor of Economics in Finance from Peking University in Beijing. Helen is also a CFA charterholder. 

Alex Edmans

Guest Speaker

Alex Edmans is Professor of Finance at London Business School. Alex has a PhD from MIT as a Fulbright Scholar, and was previously a tenured professor at Wharton and an investment banker at Morgan Stanley

Alex has spoken at the World Economic Forum in Davos, testified in the UK Parliament, and given the TED talk “What to Trust in a Post-Truth World” and the TEDx talks “The Pie-Growing Mindset” and “The Social Responsibility of Business” with a combined 2.7 million views. He serves as non-executive director of the Investor Forum, and on Royal London Asset Management’s Responsible Investment Advisory Committee. Alex’s book, “Grow the Pie: How Great Companies Deliver Both Purpose and Profit”, was a Financial Times Book of the Year for 2020, and he is a co-author of “Principles of Corporate Finance” (with Brealey, Myers, and Allen). He has won 25 teaching awards at Wharton and LBS and was named Professor of the Year by Poets & Quants in 2021

Richard Jones


Richard Jones is a Director of FSSA Investment Managers, part of First Sentier Investors. He joined FSSA Investment Managers in 2010 and is focused on Asia Pacific equities.

Richard is the lead manager of the FSSA Asia Opportunities strategy and the FSSA Asian Growth strategy. He is also responsible for managing a number of Asia Pacific equity portfolios on behalf of key client segregated accounts. 

Richard has more than 35 years of investment experience in Asia, focused on both company research and portfolio management. He graduated from the London School of Economics with a degree in Economics (Government). 

Winston Ke

Portfolio Manager

Winston Ke is a Portfolio Manager at FSSA Investment Managers, part of First Sentier Investors.

He joined FSSA Investment Managers in 2015 and covers Greater China Equities. Winston is the lead manager of the FSSA All China strategy and the FSSA China A-Shares strategy. 

Winston has more than 15 years of investment experience. He graduated from Nanjing University with a BA and an MA in Economics. Winston is also a CFA charterholder. 

Martin Lau

Managing Partner

Martin Lau is a Managing Partner of FSSA Investment Managers, part of First Sentier Investors. He has been with the team for more than 20 years, starting with the firm as Director of Greater China Equities, in 2002.

Martin is the lead fund manager of a number of FSSA strategies; the FSSA Asian Equity Plus strategy, the FSSA Asian Bridge strategy, the FSSA Asia All Cap strategy, the FSSA China Growth strategy, the FSSA Greater China Growth strategy and the FSSA Hong Kong Growth strategy.

Martin has more than 25 years of investment experience and is based in Hong Kong.

He graduated from Cambridge University with a Bachelor of Arts degree and Master’s degree in Engineering. Martin is also a CFA charterholder.

Shivika Srimal

Investment Analyst

Shivika Srimal is an Investment Analyst at FSSA Investment Managers, part of First Sentier Investors.

She joined FSSA Investment Managers as a graduate in 2017 and provides research support to the portfolio managers, with a focus on the Indian Subcontinent markets.

Shivika has 5 years of investment experience. She has graduated from Singapore Management University with a degree in Economics and an additional major in Finance.

Joey Wat

Guest Speaker

Joey Wat is CEO of Yum China (NYSE: YUMC & HKEX: 9987), a Fortune 500 Company, and has been a member of Yum China’s board of directors since 2017.

Yum China separated from Yum! Brands, Inc. and became an independently listed company on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in 2016. The Company was secondary-listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX) in 2020 and became dual primary-listed on both the NYSE and the HKEX in 2022. Ms. Wat served as the President and COO of Yum China from 2017 – 2018, and as CEO of KFC China from 2015 – 2017. Before joining YUM China Division in 2014, Ms. Wat served in both management and strategy positions at A.S. Watson of Hutchison Whampoa in the U.K. from 2004. Her last position at Watson was as Managing Director of Watson U.K. Before joining Watson, Ms. Wat spent seven years in management consulting including with McKinsey & Company in Hong Kong from 2000 to 2003. Wat holds an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a bachelor’s degree from Hong Kong University. Wat was included in the Forbes World’s Most Powerful Women list from 2020 to 2022, and Fortune’s Top 50 Most Powerful Women in International Business from 2018 to 2021.

Merryn Somerset Webb

Guest Speaker

Merryn Somerset Webb is a hugely popular speaker and acclaimed commentator on economics, financial markets and personal finance. In November 2022, she became a Senior Columnist at Bloomberg Opinion where will write a weekly column on personal finance and investment, she will also have a podcast. Merryn is among the most well-respected and prominent voices in financial journalism, having won multiple awards including Personal Finance Journalist of year in 2018, and Finance Commentator of the Year in 2019.

Previously, she was the Editor in chief of Moneyweek, the best selling financial magazine in the UK, and a contributing editor at the Financial Times.

Her most recent book, which focuses on how shareholders can leverage their influence for good, was published in January 2022.  It is called “Share Power - How ordinary people can change the way capitalism works, and make money too“ (Short Books). She brings readers into the world of corporate capitalism – from the privatisation of state-owned companies in the 80s to the financial crash of 2008 and the growth of the modern multinational – she shows how capitalism went wrong and how, with six simple recommendations, every one of us now has the power to make it work for us.

Merryn is also the author of a sharp and witty women’s guide to personal finance: “Love is Not Enough: The Smart Woman’s Guide to Making (and Keeping) Money” (2007). In 2020, she was co-presenter of Channel 4’s personal finance series ‘Superscrimpers’.

Merryn is a non-executive director of four investment trusts, Murray Income, Baillie Gifford Shin Nippon, and Blackrock Throgmorton, and of wealth management firm Netwealth. She is a non-executive adviser to the investment committee of UK platform Interactive Investor.

Merryn was a senior scholar at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, where she gained a first class degree in History and Economics. She then became a Daiwa scholar and spent a year studying Japanese at London University.

Register your interest to attend

If you'd like to register or have any queries regarding your attendance to the forum, please email [email protected]

Please note there are public transport disruptions scheduled for this week, please plan your travel accordingly:

  • National rail - overtime ban (expect delays)
  • Tube service - no impact (tube strikes are now called off)
  • Elizabeth line - no impact
  • Overground - no impact
  • DLR - no impact
  • Bus/tram - no impact


Getting here

Pan Pacific London
80 Houndsditch,

Liverpool Street Station 2 minutes' walk
Broadgate Circle
6 minutes' walk
Guildhall Art Gallery 12 minutes' walk
Tower Bridge 19 minutes' walk

More information