Geneva based Decalia Asset Management has exclusively unveiled details on its five new strategies launched at the end of 2015 in an interview with InvestmentEurope.
Alfredo Piacentini (pictured), partner and general manager of Decalia AM, and Xavier Guillon, partner at Decalia AM, have explained the firm has registered a Sicav fund range, Decalia Investment Funds, in Luxembourg after it has been granted an agreement to manage collective investment funds by Swiss regulator Finma in May 2015.
“The fund industry is being forced to restructure to face the impact of Mifid II and the growth of passive management in Europe. Funds platforms will draw large inflows as it will be easier for fund selectors to buy a fund registered on these.
“Specialists that offer a particular expertise will complete fund selectors’ allocation, while fund providers that are currently evolving in-between will likely encounter troubles over the coming years. Hence, we have decided to position ourselves as specialist in four investment themes,” Guillon says.
The investment solutions developed by Decalia AM are focusing on four major themes: disintermediation of banking sector, quest for yield in Europe, new consumer trend/Millennials and inefficiencies in Europe.
Both Decalia Muse and Decalia European Conviction funds are targeting inefficiencies in Europe.
Decalia European Conviction consists of a European equity fund while Decalia Muse is a long-short equities strategy that relies on proprietary multi-factor process, including 100 long systematic quant long equities, 30 opportunist stocks and 30 futures short.
In addition, Alfredo Piacentini, co-founder and former managing partner of Banque Syz and Oyster funds, continues to manage the Oyster Italian Opportunities Fund that has a 20-year track record on Banque Syz’s fund platform, alongside co-manager Sandro Occhilupo, senior portfolio manager at Decalia.
The firm’s global equity fund called Decalia Millennials aims to exploit opportunities on millennials’ consumer trend. It is invested in sectors such as technology, education, environment, and lifestyle.
The quest for yield in Europe remains the main theme of two distinct multi-asset strategies, one applying a conservative approach and the other with a more dynamic allocation.
These five Ucits funds are being registered across Europe and will be distributed through a vast network currently being put in place.
As for Decalia’s strategy focusing on the disintermediation of banking sector, the Swiss asset manager has teamed up with UK based private debt specialist Three Hills Capital Partners.
Together they have launched a ‘club-type’ fund, Three Hills Decalia, that exploits an opportunity in the credit market. The strategy provides subordinated debt to non-listed European small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
“The ECB quantitative easing policy has given rest to banks. A parallel business to traditional household credits is developing itself on the credit segment. It consists of a B2B credit market for financing and trading in which we see opportunities.
“In the United States, the estimated market opportunity reaches $70trn. 80% of the financing of US companies is not done by banks. In Europe, the opportunity has been estimated to $23trn. In a zero rate environment, this makes an attractive space to exploit. We are talking of returns above 7 to 8% there,” Piacentini highlights.
The second closing of the fund has been secured in December 2015 drawing €95m of inflows. The fund’s final closing is expected at end Q1 2016 with a target of €175m.
Decalia AM, which has CHF 1.2bn (€1.1bn) of assets under management excluding partners’ assets, seeks both organic and external growth through the acquisition of investment boutiques in Switzerland & across Europe.
It is understood first acquisitions will be made in 2016.
Decalia AM has been founded by Isabella Pedrazzini and Gabriel Gumener in March 2013 before Alfredo Piacentini bought the company in May 2014 and recapitalised it.