Being an active member at A&F Investments

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A&F Investments is the largest individual committee of Asset | Accounting & Finance. It is an investment group run by students of Tilburg University to broaden their knowledge in investing and asset management. Why do students choose to join? What extra knowledge do you get? These are some of the questions that are frequently asked by interested students. In this article current and past members provide us with details about their experiences, ranging from their reason to join, to how it is having an impact on their future career.

Why choose to join and how much time does it take up next to your studies?

There are many different reasons why students choose to join. Most students want to gain a more practical experience in addition to their finance related studies. In addition, you will come into contact with students who share the same interests.

For Burak Coskun, currently MSc Financial Economics student at University of Oxford and alumni member, the reason to join was that he aspired to become an investor with a rigorous, analytical approach but had no idea where to start. Regarding the input time he said: “The preparation prior to a pitch to the committee takes about 10-15 hours, but on average you spend 3-4 hours a week on committee work. I learned more from A&F Investments than from any of my courses, so the time spent was well worth it.”

Iris Heuten, currently a BSc Business Economics student at Tilburg University and active member, chose to join because she wanted to get a better insight in the financial world and use this to help her decide whether this is what she would like to do later. “On average it does not take a lot of time, when I have to make a stockwatcher report it takes 2-3 hours more than for a regular meeting. And when I have to pitch it depends on the topic that is being covered.”

The reason why Tim de Jong, currently MSc Finance student at Tilburg University and active member, stated he joined was that he wanted to learn more about investing and wanted to achieve this on a larger scale. “If you invest with a group you can buy larger stakes than when you invest by yourself and you also learn a lot more together. The amount of time you have to put in is easy to combine with your studies, the 2 hours every other week on Wednesday does not take almost anything away and you learn a lot from every pitch.”

What kind of impact has A&F Investments had on your current studies or future career?

Burak: “My experience at A&F Investments solidified my decision to stick with finance and investing both as an intellectual pursuit and a career path. I found it so fulfilling that I spent my semester after Tilburg in an uphill battle to start an investment club of my own back at my home university. I’m also managing a mid six-figure fund on behalf of several investors, which has allowed me to pay for my degree and make a decent living on the side. The skills I gained as a result of my time at A&F Investments undoubtedly contributed to the market beating track record I’ve managed to build up and my ability to raise capital.”

Iris: “When I joined, I only completed the first year of Business Economics, so I was a bit inexperienced. But I quickly learned a lot of new things and it helped me to better understand the theory and apply it in practice. Everyone is always really nice, and helps you whenever you don’t know something for sure or have a question. New members are always grouped with more experienced members so that you always have others to help you out.”

Tim: “Especially when you want to go into the direction of investing for your future career it helps a lot when applying for jobs. It is always very good to do extracurricular activities and in my experience also good for your resume. Even if you don’t pitch at all meetings, by asking good questions you also learn to be critical.”

“One can learn how to run a discounted cash flow or comparables model anywhere, but convincing a room full of intelligent and informed investors is a completely different ball game.”

What are the best highlights that you have had with this committee?

Burak: “The time I convinced the investment team to get rid of the club’s cash position and put it all into a global index fund in what was then the largest transaction to date. Besides that speculating on Pandora’s stock at the end of the night with a few beers have also been one of the fondest memories of my time at A&F Investments and Tilburg University.”

Iris: “The drinks after the meetings are a great way of getting to know everyone better in a more informal way. You make a lot of new friends during your time at A&F Investments.”

Tim: “Whenever you pitch something for the group and convince them to buy it and later on see the whole group benefitting from it, you always get a good feeling looking back at that.”

What have you learned the most from A&F Investments?

Burak: “How to articulate investment ideas. One can learn how to run a discounted cash flow or comparables model anywhere, but convincing a room full of intelligent and informed investors is a completely different ball game. Through observing dozens of pitches, I got an understanding of what works well and what doesn’t when pitching an investment thesis. If one day down the line, I become a noteworthy investor, A&F Investments will go down as ‘the place where it all started’. Anybody remotely interested in investing should definitely try it out.”

Iris: “I learned how to look at financial figures and make valuation of companies. Besides, I understand now what those numbers actually mean. Furthermore, I improved my presentation skills and got a much better insight into the world of finance.”

Tim: “How theory works in practice on a small scale. From the beginning to the end, every meeting is comparable to investment committees that I have had to attend during my internship. You learn how things work similarly in practice and learn to think more critically on this topic.” 


Interested in joining or want more information? Take a look on the website or send an email to To apply also send a resume with a motivational letter.