SG Hiscock’s SGH ICE fund has been awarded the 2015 Morningstar Fund Manager of the Year for Domestic Equities Small Caps Category, Australia.
SGH ICE invests in ASX-listed companies based on a business franchise, companies that typically deliver robust earnings growth. The fund, which was launched in 2006, has $182 million in funds under management and is distributed by Equity Trustees.
Morningstar noted, “Having won the Undiscovered Manager award in 2014, Callum Burns and SGH ICE have gone from strength to strength. Burns’ creative approach to small-cap investing involves scouring the market for companies with traits of a quality franchise, entrenched market positions, assets hard to replicate and pricing power ability. SGH ICE has produced consistently strong absolute and relative results for a number of years.”
According to Morningstar, winners are determined by Morningstar’s fund analysts. The winners are assessed against a number of factors including relative quality of a fund manager’s people, process, philosophy and style. Business and investment disciplines, risk-adjusted medium-to-long-term track record and performance in the 2014 calendar year are also key factors.
Callum Burns, Portfolio Manager, said that the award is a strong endorsement of the success of SGH ICE’s investment approach and style.
“We look for companies that are using assets which are difficult to replicate and potentially have an entrenched market position. This creates a competitive edge where it is difficult or inconvenient for customers to discontinue using the product or service and that often creates pricing power.
“We believe this approach is very different to what other fund managers in Australian Small Caps are doing and we believe it offers investors an opportunity to generate strong returns over the medium to long term, while reducing some of the risk associated with the small cap sector.”
The fund performed strongly in 2014, delivering solid returns of 13.8 percent for the calendar year compared to the S&P/ASX Small Ordinaries Accumulation Index which returned -3.8%.
Mr Burns said that as always individual selection of quality company franchises was the key driver during the year. While IPOs played a role, the fund invested in only nine of the 40 newly-listed companies that it analysed.
Harvey Kalman, Executive General Manager, Corporate Trustee Services at Equity Trustees, said the win recognises SGH ICE’s savvy insight into the market and its unwavering advocacy in finding high-performing opportunities for investors.
“We are seeing a very high level of interest from investors who are attracted to the stable medium to long term performance as well as the opportunity to invest in Australian companies outside the S&P/ASX100.
“It is wonderful to see Callum Burns and his team recognised for their achievements in identifying stable, differentiated franchise companies in which to invest on behalf of Australian investors,” Mr Kalman said.
For more information please contact:
Callum Burns Harvey Kalman
SG Hiscock Equity Trustees
Phone: 03 9612 4650 Phone: 03 8623 5301