Adrian Cronje

Chief Executive Officer

Adrian Cronje, Ph.D., CFA is Balentine’s Chief Executive Officer. He is also a founding partner of Balentine and a member of the Management Committee. In addition, as a member of the Investment Strategy Team, Adrian votes on investment policy, provides coaching to other team members, and is actively involved in communication of investment decisions.  A CFA® Charterholder, Adrian is an active member of the CFA Institute, contributing frequently on a regional, national, and international level. Adrian’s presentation, “Revisiting the Winners’ Game,” at the CFA Institute’s Asset Allocation for Private Clients conference, was chosen by the CFA Institute to be included in its prestigious publication Conference Proceedings Quarterly. Adrian is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and has been a member of Vistage 151 since 2009. He also frequently addresses Vistage audiences across the country and recently earned recognition as a Top New Vistage Speaker for 2019. Additionally, Adrian is a charter member of TiE Atlanta, an organization dedicated to fostering entrepreneurship with a focus on giving back to the community. In 2010, the Atlanta Business Chronicle named Adrian one of Atlanta’s 40 under 40, an honor designating the region’s up-and-coming business and community leaders. “First Generation Wealth,” a book co-written by Adrian and Chairman Robert Balentine, was released in September 2021.

Education

Ph.D., Cambridge University (Macroeconomics and Econometrics)M.Phil., Cambridge University (Economics and Finance)B.Com. (Hons), University of Cape Town (Economics and Accounting)

Experience

Wilmington Trust, Senior Vice President & Chief Investment StrategistSchroders (London), Director, Deputy Head of Quantitative Equity Products

Professional affiliations & awards

Atlanta Business Chronicle, 40 Under 40 (2010)CFA CharterholderCFA Institute, Future of Finance Initiative, Member & Approved SpeakerCFA Society Atlanta, Member & Course InstructorCFA Society of the UK, MemberEmory University’s Goizueta Business School, Guest LecturerJournal of Wealth Management, Editorial BoardGeorgia Institute of Technology, Quantitative and Computational Finance Program, Guest LecturerSouth African Budget Speech Competition, Winner (1993)TiE Atlanta, Top Entrepreneur Awards Honoree (2018)Vistage 151, Member & Top New Vistage Speaker (2019)Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO), Member

Community involvement
  • A+ Squash, Board of Directors & Founding President
  • Agnes Scott College, Investment Committee, Board of Trustees & Investment Committee Chairman
  • Atlanta Hedge Fund Challenge, Judge
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta, Endowment Committee (Past)
  • Marcus Autism Center, Supporter
  • Rotary Club of Atlanta, Board Member and Trustee of Charitable Foundation
Q&A

What was your best business decision?

Walking away from a comfortable position to join Robert Balentine and my other partners to reconstitute Balentine as an independent firm. It was a huge risk for my young family, but the opportunity to start with a clean slate and build a lasting firm to manage client assets the way in which we would want our own capital to be stewarded has been more rewarding than I could have imaged at the time.

If you weren’t in this business, what would you be doing?

Perhaps teaching in some capacity. Nothing is more rewarding than to help someone finally have that “a-ha!” moment. Having studied theoretical economics and applying those concepts in building my own business, I have developed strong opinions of what the textbooks are missing and how academia can benefit from a practical, entrepreneurial perspective.What keeps you up at night?Differentiating ourselves in a perceived “sea of sameness.” Many people believe that independent Registered Investment Advisers, brokers, trust companies, banks, and even consultants offer the “same thing,” when in fact there are important differences in business models and investment philosophies that influence outcomes. Often people spend more time planning their next vacation than planning their investment future.How do you contribute to Balentine’s global perspective?I was born in South Africa, continued my education in the UK, and began my career in London. My wife is from Augusta, GA, so we “split the difference” and decided to raise our family in Atlanta.

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