Fund launches roundup : Cantab, AXA, Schroders, Amundi, Matthews Asia

The number of funds launching has climbed in recent weeks, including those in the areas of systematic investing, small cap, US equity, and China.

The following funds have been launched in recent weeks:

Cantab Capital Partners

Cantab Capital Partners, the Cambridge-based $4.7 billion systematic global macro manager, has launched the CCP Core Macro Fund. It will be opened to external investors on 01 February 2013.

Based on a multi-model, multi-asset approach, the fund is designed to give investors access to a diversified stream of macro-style returns at a fraction of standard industry fees, as well as offer daily liquidity. It is expected to show negligible correlation to traditional sources of risk (equity and fixed income) and limited correlation to trend following strategies.

Ewan Kirk, Cantab founding partner and CIO, said there has been increasing interest in systematic macro investing among institutions because “it is perhaps the only liquid investment style that exhibits negligible correlation to equity and bond markets over time.”

AXA WF Framlington Global Small Cap

AXA Investment Managers has launched the AXA WF Framlington Global Small Cap offering access to the superior long term growth prospects of global small cap companies across developed and emerging markets.

The fund is managed by Isabelle de Gavoty, Head of the six-strong European Small and Mid Caps Investment Team at AXA Framlington. The fund will invest in equities and equity-related securities issued by small and medium sized companies worldwide.

de Gavoty said the global small cap universe is under-researched and under-owned, providing many opportunities for specialist active managers. Fuelled by secular growth trends and spurred by innovation and M&A activity, global small caps have outperformed broader markets over multiple market cycles.

The fund will target companies that benefit from structural global growth themes, such as cloud computing and mobile payments, in addition to pure domestic opportunities, such as emerging market consumers. Stock selection is expected to be the primary source of added value.

The fund is UCITS IV compliant and domiciled in Luxembourg. It has both retail and institutional share classes with no minimum investment into the retail share class and €5 million minimum investment into the institutional share class. The fund is currently registered for sale in Luxembourg and AXA IM is considering registration across a number of other European countries. The firm manages €1.8 billion in dedicated regional small and mid cap strategies.

Schroders Sirios US Equity fund

Schroders ihad added another externally-managed fund, Schroder GAIA Sirios US Equity to its UCITS platform, GAIA (Global Alternative Investor Access), designed to give investors easier access to hedge funds.

The new fund is a fundamental long/short equity fund, which invests primarily in US mid and large-cap companies with potential exposure to Asia and Europe, scheduled to launch in February 2013.

It will be managed by the same team that manages the existing Sirios US equity long/short hedge fund, which launched in July 1999 and has a track record of producing considerable alpha with lower volatility.

The team of 10 investment professionals will be led by Sirios’ co-founder and Managing Director John Brennan. The Fund seeks to invest in attractively valued, growth-oriented companies, with short positions in companies affected by deteriorating fundamentals and poor balance sheets. It may also take opportunistic positions in fixed income if offering equity-like returns with lower risk.

The GAIA platform was launched in November 2009 and has reached $1.53 billion in assets under management. Schroders has five funds on the platform, three managed by external hedge fund managers (Schroder GAIA CQS Credit, Schroder GAIA Egerton Equity and the new Schroder GAIA Sirios US Equity) and two managed internally (Schroder GAIA QEP Global Absolute and Schroder GAIA Global Macro Bond).


Amundi ETF has launched a product designed for investors seeking to take positions on the European equity market without exposure to financial sectors: banks, insurance, real estate and diversified financials. With a total expense ratio of 0.30%, the ETF tracks MSCI Europe Ex financials, a well-diversified index comprising more than 330 constituents, covering 80% of the MSCI EUROPE index but with lower volatility.

Within the Amundi range, two sector ETFs tracking MSCI EUROPE BANKS and MSCI EUROPE INSURANCE already exist, providing exposure to European banks and insurance companies.

Matthews Asia China Dividend fund

Matthews Asia is expanding its Luxembourg-domiciled UCITS fund range with the launch of the Matthews China Dividend Fund, focused exclusively on Chinese dividend-paying companies.

It will seek companies that are well-positioned to grow future dividends while providing an attractive dividend yield. Matthews noted that Asia Pacific has evolved into one of the premier regions for investors seeking growing dividends and yield.

The universe of dividend-paying companies in Asia Pacific-and in particular China-has expanded significantly. Over 840 Chinese companies paid dividends in 2011, compared with about 240 companies in 1998. Total dividend payment increased from about $8 billion in 1998 to more than $72 billion.

The Matthews China Dividend strategy has been available to investors in the U.S. since 2009, and delivered a 3-year annualized return of 10.24% versus a benchmark return of 1.80%. The UCITS fund will follow the same investment approach and is managed by the same team of Yu Zhang, CFA, and Jesper Madsen, CFA. The same team also oversees the Matthews Asia Dividend strategy, which launched in 2006 in the U.S. and in 2010 as a Luxembourg-based UCITS fund.


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