Spheria Emerging Companies
Spheria Emerging Companies Limited (the Company, ASX: SEC) is a listed investment company (LIC) that provides investors with access to an actively managed, Australian and New Zealand small and micro companies portfolio, designed for investors seeking capital growth and portfolio diversification.
It is a confined capacity investment strategy that identifies smaller companies where the present value of cash flows can be reasonably determined and they are assessed to be trading at a discount to their intrinsic value.
The smaller companies universe is more volatile and higher risk. An experienced investment manager in the small company end of the market is paramount to success, for this reason there are only a small number of listed investment companies offering access to a diversified small companies investment portfolio.
Spheria Asset Management Pty Ltd (the Manager, Spheria), is the appointed investment manager and is a specialist team with a track record of navigating the higher risk opportunities at the small end of the market.
The Company’s investment objectives are to outperform (before fees) the S&P/ASX Small Ordinaries Accumulation Index (Benchmark) over a full investment cycle (typically 3 to 5 years); and provide capital growth and income.
Investment Philosophy And Strategy
The investment philosophy is to purchase securities where the present value of future free cash flows can be reasonably ascertained and the security is trading at a discount to its intrinsic value.
Keeping an open mind to potential investments is critical to our process and expanding horizons to consider global influences gives us a powerful edge.
Assessing risk is fundamental to Spheria’s investment philosophy. Explicit risk controls include a preference for companies which are geared to a level that the Manager considers appropriate given the nature of the relevant businesses and have free cash flow to support that relevant level of gearing.
The Company’s portfolio will typically be comprised of between 20 and 65 different securities. Pre-IPO securities and cash are also permitted investments.
Diversification to complement concentrated large cap Australian equities portfolios
The Australian equities market is heavily concentrated, the top 20 stocks accounted for 65% of the market capitalisation of the S&P/ASX 100 Index as at 31 August 2017. Many industry sectors are also concentrated in a few companies. The Company’s smaller company focus provides investors with diversification to complement heavily concentrated Australian share portfolios.
Rare and limited opportunity
This is a rare opportunity to invest in a listed investment company that is managed by a specialist team with a track record of navigating the higher risk opportunities at the small end of the market. There are only a small handful of scalable, quality listed investment companies offering access to a portfolio of small and micro Australian and New Zealand companies.
Marcus Burns and Matthew Booker have strong track records managing small company portfolios
Portfolio Managers, Marcus Burns and Matthew Booker established Spheria Asset Management Pty Limited in April 2016. Marcus and Matthew have deep expertise across equity markets garnered over a combined 40+ years’ experience managing small company portfolios through volatile markets and have worked together for 4.5 years.
Board Of Directors
The Company believes that the Manager has the skill, depth of knowledge and history of achieving results using the Investment Strategy and processes to manage the Company Portfolio.
The Manager will be overseen by the Board of Directors who have a broad range of experience in investment management combined with financial and commercial expertise.
Jonathan and Lorraine, being Independent Directors, are free from any business or other relationship that could materially interfere with, or reasonably be perceived to materially interfere with, the independent exercise of the person’s judgement.
Meet our board
Jonathan Trollip is an experienced Director with over 30 years of commercial, corporate, governance, legal and transaction experience.
Jonathan is currently non-executive chairman of ASX listed Global Value Fund Limited, Future Generation Investment Company Limited, Antipodes Global Investment Company Limited, Plato Income Maximiser Limited and Spicers Limited and a non-executive director of ASX listed Kore Potash Limited. He holds commercial private company directorships with Propel Funeral Partners Limited and BCAL Diagnostics Pty Ltd. In the philanthropy area he is chairman of Science for Wildlife Limited, and a director of The Watarrka Foundation and the University of Cape Town Australia Alumni Trust.
Jonathan worked as a principal of Meridian International Capital Limited about 22 years. Prior to that, he was a Partner with law firm Herbert Smith Freehills. He holds postgraduate degrees in economics and law, was admitted as a qualified lawyer in England and Australia and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Lorraine has worked for over 30 years in the pension and investment industries, and possesses extensive experience in both the investment management and superannuation fields.
Lorraine is currently a non-executive director of ASX listed Antipodes Global Investment Company Limited and Plato Income Maximiser Limited. Lorraine also serves on the BT Financial Group Superannuation Board, the Board of the MDC Foundation and is a member of the investment committee of QSuper. She served on the Board of the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia for 12 years and the Board of the Investment Management Consultants Association for 13 years, and has been awarded Life Membership of both associations.
Lorraine is a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries of Australia, a Fellow of ASFA and holds a BSc from Monash University, Melbourne.
Adrian joined Pinnacle as an equity partner in 2008 and is responsible for manager acquisition and research as well as having a primary focus of building relationships with asset consultants, institutional investors and financial advisers on behalf of Pinnacle’s specialist investment managers in Australia and offshore.
Adrian has 15 years investment experience and sits on the board of Pinnacle Investment Management Group Limited (ASX: PNI), Pinnacle, Hyperion Asset Management Limited and the Manager. Prior to joining Pinnacle, Adrian was a Director at Schroder Investment Management.
Alternate Non-Independent Director
Alex Ihlenfeldt has over 25 years commercial experience in financial services in Australia and overseas and has proven expertise in the provision of the full suite of turn-key, institutional quality non-investment services for investment managers. He is experienced in operating across the full spectrum, from start-up boutiques to mature investment managers.
Alex is currently Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Pinnacle Investment Management Limited with whom he has been associated since inception in 2006. Prior to joining Pinnacle in 2011, he spent 10 years with the Wilson HTM Investment Group as Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Head of Wealth Management.
Alex has a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Australian and New Zealand as well as a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Alex is a Director of each of Pinnacle, Solaris Investment Management Limited, Antipodes Partners Limited, an Alternate Director of Resolution Capital Limited and he is Chairman of the Pinnacle Fund Services Limited’s Compliance Committee. Alex is a non-independent director of ASX listed Antipodes Global Investment Company Limited and Plato Income Maximiser Limited.
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