Abante Asesores’ Smart-ISH Project was launched in 2011 with the ethos of boosting those Spanish asset managers known as management boutiques and niche managers facing the tough competition against giant asset managers and banking groups.
Inmaculada Bresco (pictured), fund selector at Abante Asesores, says: “There are very good managers in Spain but unfortunately they need greater visibility, as sometimes they are even unknown by the industry.
However, although the number of boutiques in Spain is increasingly growing, it is still relatively low compared with other European countries.”
The starting point of Smart-ISH selection process is in identifying the managers behind those funds actively managed, acting under the conviction that the person managing the fund is much more relevante to the fund’s performance than the way the market where it invests behaves.
Fund managers need to meet just three requirements to be able to participate in the company’s selected list: the first is to be Spanish, secondly to have part of their money invested in the fund they manage, and the third is to manage funds actively. “We have had good experience so far with actively managed funds, which implies to meet managers regularly in order to understand their investment strategy,”Bresco outlines.
The Smart-ISH universe currently gathers 126 funds, from which 43% are equity funds, 34% flexible stock exchange products, 21% multi-strategy funds, and 2% fixed income funds.
Looking ahead, Bresco seems to be optimistic and enphasises in social media as a key element for a Spanish managers boost, since it allows for a more direct dialogue and greater spontaneity between managers and investors.