Wellington-headquartered financial services firm, Booster, has handed US global equity manager, Fisher Investments, its first NZ mandate.
David Beattie, Booster chief investment officer, said the $2 billion plus Booster appointed the top-down ‘thematic’ manager to run about $40 million of international shares under an “advisory mandate”.
“We implement everything from here but Fisher makes all the investment decisions,” Beattie said.
He said the agreement with Fisher, which has operated an Australian office for a couple of years, complemented Booster’s similar arrangement with European-based manager Rothschild Asset Management.
According to Beattie, the both Fisher and Rothschild add active ‘satellite’ strategies to Booster’s core passive equity holdings managed mainly by Vanguard.
Booster funded the Fisher mandate by shifting assets from Rothschild and the group’s index exposures, he said.
Both Fisher and Rothschild manage money across the Booster range of unit trusts and KiwiSaver funds. The group also invests in a Magellan global shares fund for its non-KiwiSaver suite of products.
While the $40 million mandate was below scale in a global sense for an institutional firm like Fisher, Beattie said the deal was a good entry point to NZ for the approximately US$90 billion investment firm.
“We also have a track record of entering into long-term deals with [global] managers,” he said.
Booster seeded Vanguard’s first kiwi dollar-hedged fund, for example, and was “almost the first” NZ manager to invest in Magellan, Beattie said.
Not to be confused with NZ’s own Fisher Funds, Fisher Investments was founded in 1979 by Ken Fisher. According to the group’s website, Fisher pioneered the use of the ‘price-to-sales ratio’ as an investment analytical tool.
The manager runs a number of global and US equity strategies for both institutional and high net worth investors.
“Our unique top-down portfolio management process sets us apart from other investment management firms in that our focus is on macro decisions at the country and sector/industry level,” the Fisher site says. “We believe our process is uniquely suited for managing portfolios, in contrast with more “bottom-up” approaches of many competitors who may leave key sector or country decisions as passive residuals.”
As well as three offices in the US, Fisher has operations in the UK, Germany, Dubai, Japan and Sydney “with further global expansion underway”.