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for the future



    executive class
   luxury & leisure

   for the future
Shaun meadowS of aviva talkS to Smart
inveStor about managing hiS money and
  planning for hiS daughter’S future.
             TExT Jo-Ann huAng

                                        Shaun Meadows,
                                        chief executive
                                        officer of Aviva
                                        for Singapore,
                                        Hong Kong and
                                        the Middle East

             SmartInvEsTor 71
                                                   conversations                                                                                                       conversations

         hief executive officer of British insurer Aviva      Mr Meadows has also made a variety of
         Shaun Meadows is smart with his money             investments for his long-term financial goals. And
         – given his vast experience in the finance        having been with Aviva for more than 20 years, he
industry and a keen understanding of wealth                is fully covered by his long-time employer.
management products. But the 45 year-old Briton               He has life insurance, mortgage cover, health,
considers his greatest “investment” to be his daughter,
Lucy, who turns 18 this year.
                                                           home and car insurance with Aviva, which amount
                                                           to about $5 million. His policies also provide a death
                                                                                                                               “I would say I am
  “I have purchased three endowment plans which            benefit which amounts to four times his salary.             quIte dIscIplIned when
will provide about $30,000 a year for three                   Besides Aviva, he also holds a wide range of                  It comes to savIng
consecutive years of her university education,” says       investments in equity funds, endowments and
Mr Meadows, who heads Aviva’s operations in                property, which he leases out to premium                               and spendIng –
Singapore, Hong Kong and the Middle East. Besides          investment-linked policies and unit trusts. “In total,         I even keep a record
providing for his daughter’s education, he has also
taught her how to be a prudent spender. She intends
                                                           I invest about 40 per cent in equity funds such as
                                                           Fidelity China Focused Fund and the Aviva Investors
                                                                                                                         of my daIly expenses
to pursue her university degree in the UK.                 Property Fund,” he says.                                              whIch Is a habIt
  “I would say I am quite disciplined when it comes
to saving and spending – I even keep a record of my
                                                              “Another 40 per cent goes into stocks, 10 per cent
                                                           in endowments while the remaining 10 per cent I
                                                                                                                        I’m proud to say that
daily expenses which is a habit I’m proud to say that      keep in cash,” he continues. Overall, his investments           lucy has pIcked up,”
Lucy has picked up,” he enthuses. He also sets aside       have yielded 10 to 15 per cent in returns per year,      Chief executive officer of Aviva (Singapore, Hong Kong
20 to 30 per cent of his salary a month for long-term      he says.                                                   and the Middle East) Shaun Meadows on his greatest
                                                                                                                             “investment” – his 18 year-old daughter Lucy.
investments or a well-earned treat such as going on           Mr Meadows plans to retire by 55 and he intends
vacation.                                                  to do so by carefully growing his wealth. The wine          Being in the finance industry for more than 20
                                                           connoisseur dreams of working on a vineyard in           years, Mr Meadows has learnt that focus holds the
PLannIng hIs InvEsTmEnTs                                   Italy for his retirement, savouring fine Italian wines   key to sound investments, especially in the face of
Mr Meadows arrived in Singapore in September               such as Gavi D’Gavi, Barolo and Brunello in his          global financial turmoil. “The current crisis has taught
2007 when he was appointed CEO. Prior to that,             golden years. As of now, he estimates that half of       us all to think beyond the immediate term and plan
he was the marketing director of Norwich Union             his current income will be sufficient for his            for the mid- to long-term future. We should not
Insurance, a subsidiary of Aviva based in England.         retirement. “Assuming that my mortgages are paid         neglect our long-term savings and investment needs
He was also a financial advisor at Lloyds TSB Bank         up and my daughter has graduated from university,”       when faced with short-term economic challenges,”
for six years before joining Aviva.                        he says.                                                 he stresses.
                                                                                                                       Despite a drop in investment sentiment, Aviva is
                                                                                                                    posting growth – a feat in these unusually tough
                                                                                                                    times. “We have achieved over 30 per cent growth
                                                                                                                    in regular premiums year-on-year,” he says. He
                                                                                                                    attributes this to recognising and meeting customers’
                                                                                                                    evolving needs, which he says incline towards
                                                                                                                    protection and investments or savings offerings that
                                                                                                                    come with guarantees.
                                                                                                                       “The increasing consumer caution highlights a
                                                                                                                    need for the industry to go back to basics by delivering
                                                                                                                    clear and transparent products, providing excellent
                                                                                                                    customer service, and ensuring customers are getting
                                                                                                                    what they need,” he continues.

                                                                                                                    UnwIndIng In sIngaPorE
                                                                                                                    Growing up under year-long hazy conditions made            not being able to indulge in his love of wine as freely
                                                                                                                    the move to Singapore all the more welcome. Mr             as before. “I enjoy having a glass of Italian wine to
                                                                                                                    Meadows has been living in Singapore for more than         unwind and the one thing I truly miss is the wide
                                                                                                                    a year and enjoys the warm weather more than an            selection of fine wines that are readily available back
                                                                                                                    average Singaporean would. “I take full advantage of       home,” he says.
                                                                                                                    the fine weather by sun-tanning whenever I find time          “While I love the Singaporean weather, I
                                                                                                                    to lounge about with a nice glass of wine,” he says.       sometimes do miss the close proximity to skiing
                                                                                                                    Apart from basking under the sun, he also plays games      destinations back in the UK where I could take ski
                                                                                                                    on his Nintendo Wii and attends rock concerts.             trips on a whim. That being said, I’m fully enjoying
                                                                                                                      But despite the summery weather, Mr Meadows’             my stay in Singapore and rarely get homesick.” he
                                                                                                                    only gripe when it comes to living in Singapore is         ends. SI

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