Bennelong forms new partnership with Wheelhouse Partners

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Boutique fund incubator Bennelong Funds Management has formed a partnership with three asset management experts – Alastair MacLeod, Sam Jacob and Andrew MacLeod – to create a new business, Wheelhouse Investment Partners.

It brings the number of partnerships Bennelong has with specialist asset managers to eight, and the funds to 12.

The team’s mission is to deliver improved investment outcomes to Australian retirees. To achieve this, Wheelhouse Partners takes into account the real-world challenges of market volatility, income generation, and the impact of manager fees, whilst still delivering access to a high growth asset class, namely equities.

For their initial offering, they are utilising Morningstar index and research capabilities to deliver a global equity income strategy. The strategy relies upon an index created and maintained by Morningstar with Wheelhouse Partners integrating a tailor-made derivative overlay, purpose built for Australian retirees.

The focus on actual outcomes delivered is an important concept for the business, as outcomes are ultimately what the investor receives and can differ materially from simple time-weighted performance expectations.

Portfolio manager Alastair MacLeod  says the global equity income strategy aims to minimise the risk of chronic loss when investors can least afford it.

“When Australians enter retirement, and have changed from accumulation to redemption mode, their investment objectives need to change too. Australians are fortunate to be living longer, which means investment strategies also need to change to minimise the risk of retirees outliving their savings, and the real-world outcomes that this represents.

“Returns are very important but the shaping of those returns, and the management of portfolio risk to better align outcomes with when retirees are most likely to have their life savings at work, can massively impact – and improve – investor outcomes,” Mr MacLeod said.

“The strategy is designed to have structural lowered volatility, improved capital preservation and higher income generation, all of which, when combined with a growth asset like equities, should work to narrow the range of investment outcomes.

“Manager fees also stand between returns and outcomes, and we have structured our offering with Bennelong to enable what we believe is a genuine low-cost solution for the value that we provide.”

The Wheelhouse Global Equity Income Fund is now available for sophisticated and institutional investors; plans are underway to extend the offering to the retail market at a later date.

The Fund is based upon the Morningstar® Developed Markets Wide Moat Focus IndexSM, which is in turn drawn from a universe of approximately 1,400 stocks that are actively researched by Morningstar’s global equity analyst team. Morningstar’s equity analyst team consists of over 100 equity analysts globally that apply the same consistent economic moat investment philosophy in their research and valuation activities.

Furthermore, all stocks that appear in the index are required to be rated ‘Wide Moat’ which, as defined by Morningstar, are companies with a structural business characteristic that supports a firm to generate excess economic returns for an extended period of time.

Bennelong CEO Craig Bingham said Wheelhouse Partners has a solid team and has developed an offering that is designed to help retirees manage the volatility in their investment portfolio, and smooth their income returns.

“Alastair and his team have a strong background, and proven track record. Bennelong’s reputation has been built on its success in identifying and partnering with quality asset managers, offering high-grade investments. Wheelhouse Partners fits this model perfectly.”

Mr MacLeod said the Bennelong philosophy to provide the environment for entrepreneurial, specialist asset managers to create relevant and sought after investment products, was key to the decision.

“Bennelong is the best at what it does in the market. With Bennelong providing the distribution, marketing, compliance, finance and administrative support, we are free to focus our attention on investment management and positive outcomes for investors.”


 Morningstar and the Morningstar® Wide Moat Focus IndexSM are service marks of Morningstar, Inc. and have been licensed for use for certain purposes by Wheelhouse Investment Partners. The Wheelhouse Global Equity Income Fund is not sponsored, endorsed, sold or promoted by Morningstar, and Morningstar makes no representation or warranty, express or implied, to the investors regarding the advisability of investing in securities generally or in this Fund. Morningstar’s relationship with Wheelhouse is the licensing of: (i) certain service marks and service names of Morningstar; and (ii) the Index which is determined, composed and calculated by Morningstar. Morningstar is not responsible for and has not participated in the formation of the Fund; Morningstar has no obligation or liability in connection with the administration, marketing or trading of the Fund.