The Global Equity Team
We are experienced investment professionals with a belief that a strong team-based approach to picking stocks and active portfolio management will produce the best results for clients. Most of the team has worked together for over eight years and during this time they have developed a successful, repeatable investment process that combines top-quality fundamental research, financial modelling and analysis with rigorous portfolio construction and management. This approach results in truly differentiated global equity portfolios, constructed using their highest-conviction Future Quality ideas.
We are very particular about the type of company we invest in. This is reflected in our investment philosophy, which puts Future Quality at its heart.
In our view, the potential for Future Quality can be analysed and projected by detailed research into a business and the markets it serves. This focus underpins our approach to researching investment opportunities, portfolio construction and portfolio management.
Identifying Future Quality
We uncover Future Quality opportunities by assessing the merits of each potential investment using the same four-pillar framework:
Franchise Quality: We look for businesses with a strong competitive advantage, or those that have this potential, perhaps due to the changing structure of their industries or through product innovation.
Management Quality: We identify strong management teams with proven track records and clear strategies for their businesses. We expect the management teams of our investment companies to be able to attract and retain the best talent and foster great company cultures.
Balance Sheet Quality: We produce detailed financial models of potential holdings as we want our investments to have robust and sustainable balance sheets and the capacity to finance their growth through strong cash generation.
Valuation: Our modelling and assessment of potential future cash flows is disciplined and conservative. Ultimately, we want to identify if share prices reflect the valuations in our models, or if there are opportunities that the market has not yet appreciated.
Only investment prospects that meet these detailed research criteria can be included in client portfolios. Indeed, we only construct portfolios with the highest-conviction Future Quality companies. Environment, social and governance (ESG) considerations register highly in our analysis of the Future Quality pillars, as it is our belief that good companies make good investments.
A Collective Focus
We have fostered a strong team dynamic. Our collective knowledge and experience are powerful tools for delivering investment performance. Each Portfolio Manager is a seasoned investor with a broad skillset, each Portfolio Manager has an average investment experience of over 22 years which means we have experienced many market cycles. Younger team members bring fresh thinking to the table and work hand in hand with the Portfolio Managers.
We operate a flat structure where all our Portfolio Managers have a dual role that combines investment analysis and portfolio management responsibilities.
Within this structure, we all actively challenge the ideas and research of colleagues throughout the investment process, in an open atmosphere of vigorous debate and constructive deliberation.
We take collective responsibility for approving stocks for the portfolio, and therefore there is joint accountability for performance. As such, it is in everyone’s interest to ensure that the investment analysis is thorough and that no stone is left unturned in the search for Future Quality.
Building Differentiated Portfolios
We have a high-conviction strategy that is not constrained by benchmarks, so Future Quality can be sourced from listed businesses across any geography or sector. In a world awash with investment opportunities, our disciplined, accountable and transparent process helps us to focus in on potential Future Quality companies.
Investment ideas are sourced in different ways, including fundamental industry or thematic research, team discussion, meetings, independent analysis and in-house resources. We like to think of it as ‘joining the dots’, as we apply our knowledge and market understanding to think laterally and pragmatically to find the best available investment opportunities. We look for businesses with, or with a potential path to, high and sustainable returns, but are under-appreciated by the market – Future Quality.
As we are fundamental, bottom-up stock selectors, we provide full financial models for each investment idea. Our Portfolio Managers have specific sector responsibilities and are experts in the industries under their coverage. We investigate all the Future Quality pillars – the quality of the franchise, management and balance sheet and valuation – as well as exploring material ESG factors.
Research templates are presented to the whole team at our Weekly Research Meeting. The template model and analysis are challenged by team members, with assumptions stress-tested and business drivers and Future Quality factors deliberated. This research meeting ultimately leads to a team decision on the overall merits of the stock in question, to decide whether it is suitable for potential portfolio inclusion.
Upon approval, the stock is compared to around one hundred other researched investments using our Stock-Ranking Tool. Every month, each team member grades the Future Quality ideas for degree of conviction and outperformance potential. We then hold a stock-ranking meeting to challenge and evaluate the portfolio and other researched ideas. This forum leads to us optimising the investment mix, as we constantly focus in on our strongest-conviction ideas. Our process produces concentrated, high-conviction portfolios of around 40 to 50 holdings, with significant active weights that bear little resemblance to global benchmark indices.
All information in this document as at 30 June 2019.
Global Equity Capability
We are experienced investment professionals with a belief that a strong team-based approach to picking stocks and active portfolio management will produce the best results for clients.
Future Quality Insights
It has been 50 years since the start of what is locally called ‘The Troubles’—a civil war in Northern Ireland that over a 30-year period lead to the death of over 3,500 people and injured or killed just under 2% of the population.
Global Equity Quarterly - Q1 2019
Our philosophy is centred on the search for ‘Future Quality’ in a company. Future Quality companies are those which will attain and sustain high returns on investment.
Global Equity Quarterly Report - Q4 2018
Stock picking is in our DNA and the Future Quality characteristics of the businesses that we invest in don’t change just because we have a new desktop calendar.
Global Equity Quarterly Report - Q3 2018
It is more important than ever to focus on the discipline behind how you select businesses rather than being influenced by the overdue burst of volatility and profit taking.
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