Register to get unlimited access to Citywire’s fund manager database. Registration is free and only takes a minute.

Five alternatives to the Pictet-Robotics fund

Citywire Selector looks at the competitors vying for the hot strategy's space in the market.

Soft-close story

Pictet soft-closed its hugely-popular Pictet Robotics fund, after it hit €3 billion in assets just 18 months after it was first launched.

The Swiss group designed the fund as a way of tapping the so-called ‘robotics revolution’, which includes advances in IT, cloud computing and artificial intelligence.

Interest in the fund was heightened in the summer when Citywire Selector revealed Pictet had shuffled its manager line-up, with Karen Kharmandarian stepping back and assuming a new role within the thematic equities team.

Despite these changes, Citywire AAA-rated Peter Lingen told Citywire Selector robotics is something investors can really connect to. But how can they connect if the fund is soft-closed?

In this round up, Citywire Selector highlights five alternatives to the Pictet-Robotics fund for the robo-savvy investors wanting to take a piece of the theme for themselves.

Note: Funds chosen are done on a subjective basis based on similar characteristics, recent outperformance and/or rated managers overseeing them.

Leave a comment!

Please sign in or register to comment. It is free to register and only takes a minute or two.

1. CS (Lux) Global Robotics Equity fund

Credit Suisse’s offering in the robotics field is the CS (Lux) Global Robotics Equity fund, which is managed by Citywire AA-rated Patrick Kolb and Angus Muirhead.

It aims to cover three high-growth sub-themes: improving productivity; improving quality of life; and, performing dangerous tasks. Within these themes, companies invested in will have at least 50% of their exposure attributable to robotics, automation and artificial intelligence.

At present, the fund has around €980 million in assets under management and 51 holdings. The US is a key theme for the managers, with 52.50% allocated to the country and 63.50% allocated to the US dollar.

Top ten holdings of the fund include companies such as US-based 3D measurements, imaging and realisation technology company, Faro Technologies (2.63%), as well as a 2.42% allocation to Japanese electronics company, Omron.

Speaking to Citywire Selector’s sister site, Citywire Switzerland, Muirhead recently said that the team don’t plan to grow beyond $1.5 billion in assets under management.

Leave a comment!

Please sign in or register to comment. It is free to register and only takes a minute or two.

2. ROBO Global Robotics and Automation GO Ucits ETF

If you would rather play the robotics theme through an ETF, then ETF securities offer the ROBO Global Robotics and Automation GO Ucits ETF.

The fund only invests in stocks where the index classifies companies as either ‘bellwether’ stocks, which are companies the majority of whose business is related to robotics and automation.

This is as well as ‘non-bellwether’ stocks, which are companies with a distinct portion of business involved in robotics and automation. The index allocates 40% to ‘bellwether’ and 60% to ‘non-bellwether’.

At present, the fund has top 10 portfolio allocations to companies such as London-based Zebra Technologies Innovation and Design, which is a computer hardware manufacturer.

Its main sector allocation is computer processing and AI, which accounts for 20.0% of the portfolio, this is followed by manufacturing and automation (15.2%).

Speaking to Citywire Selector earlier this month, ETF Securities’ Howie Li said small and mid-sized companies are the real driving force for robotics, which is set to power transformational change in the sector.

Leave a comment!

Please sign in or register to comment. It is free to register and only takes a minute or two.

3. Candriam Equity L- Robotics & Innovative Tech

Earlier this year Franco-Belgian group, Candriam, joined the robotics race with the Candriam Robotics and Innovative Technology fund, which is overseen by Citywire A-rated Johan Van der Biest.

The fund, which taps into Moore’s Law, which is able to predict the rate at which technological growth will develop, came out just one week after Pictet soft-closed its own robotics offering.

Speaking to Citywire Selector in March, Van der Biest said the fund would focus on Big Data, cloud computing, virtual reality, 5G technology, the Internet of Things, advanced robotics and programmatic advertising.

Similar to the Credit Suisse fund, Candriam’s offering currently has 49.60% allocated to the US, followed by 19% in Japan, 6.93% in Germany, as well as 5.68% in Switzerland.

Leave a comment!

Please sign in or register to comment. It is free to register and only takes a minute or two.

4. AXA WF Framlington Robotech

At the beginning of 2017, AXA IM bolstered its Framlington equities division with the launch of the AXA WF Framlington Robotech fund.

The fund has a broad remit and invests in the equities of companies anywhere in the world that are in the robotics technology sector.

Managed by Tom Riley and Jeremy Gleeson, it invests at least two-thirds of its net assets in equities and the equity-related securities of companies in the robotics technology sector and/or companies making large use of that technology in their businesses.

This includes companies in transport, healthcare semi-conductors or software industries, and investments may include companies of any market capitalisation.

The fund has been designed for investors looking to position in the sector for at least eight years. When the fund was launched, Riley said the robotics revolution is expected to grow 10% a year until 2025.

Leave a comment!

Please sign in or register to comment. It is free to register and only takes a minute or two.

5. RoboCap Ucits fund

Sitting at the top of the global themes sector is Jonathan Cohen with the RoboCap Ucits fund. The little-known gem has returned 52.7% over the year to the end of October 2017, while its most talked about counterpart, the Pictet Robotics fund, returned 40.1%.

The fund sits on Montlake’s Ucits platform and invests in ‘pure-play’ stocks, such as those which have at least 40% of sales generated from robotics and automation related end markets.

It invests in around 20-30 stocks at any one time and at present, the fund has around 51% of assets in large-cap companies, 46.5% in mid-cap and 2.5% in small-cap.

The top five holdings of the fund are companies such as Daifuku, Fanuc, Intuitive Surgical, Keyence and Yaskawa Electric.

Last month, the team said October 2017 had been the best monthly performance the fund had generated since inception, as Japanese names maintained their positive momentum in the Chinese market, as well as seeing sales jump both domestically and in the US.

Leave a comment!

Please sign in or register to comment. It is free to register and only takes a minute or two.

Related Fund Managers

Jeremy Gleeson
Jeremy Gleeson
32/116 in Equity - Technology (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 60.77%
Johan Van der Biest
Johan Van der Biest
19/116 in Equity - Technology (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 66.54%
Jonathan Cohen
Jonathan Cohen
1/77 in Equity - Global Themes (Performance over 1 year) Average Total Return: 52.76%
Tom Riley
Tom Riley
5/86 in Equity - Global Themes (Performance over 3 months) Average Total Return: 11.77%
Angus Muirhead
Angus Muirhead
6/86 in Equity - Global Themes (Performance over 3 months) Average Total Return: 10.39%
Patrick Kolb
Patrick Kolb
4/57 in Equity - Global Themes (Performance over 3 years) Average Total Return: 41.04%
Peter Lingen
Peter Lingen
2/77 in Equity - Global Themes (Performance over 1 year) Average Total Return: 41.83%
Karen Kharmandarian
Karen Kharmandarian
Events
  • Citywire Alternative Ucits Retreat 2017

    Citywire Alternative Ucits Retreat 2017

  • Citywire Milan 2017

    Citywire Milan 2017

  • Citywire Paris 2017

    Citywire Paris 2017

  • Citywire Deutschland 2017

    Citywire Deutschland 2017

  • Citywire DACH 2017

    Citywire DACH 2017

  • Citywire Italy 2016

    Citywire Italy 2016

  • Citywire Milan 2016

    Citywire Milan 2016

  • Citywire Alt Ucits 2016

    Citywire Alt Ucits 2016

  • Citywire Berlin 2016

    Citywire Berlin 2016

  • Citywire Switzerland 2017

    Citywire Switzerland 2017

  • Citywire Amsterdam 2016

    Citywire Amsterdam 2016

  • Citywire Montreux 2016

    Citywire Montreux 2016

  • Citywire Deutschland 2016

    Citywire Deutschland 2016

  • Citywire Latin America 2016

    Citywire Latin America 2016

  • Citywire Milan 2016

    Citywire Milan 2016

  • Citywire Munich 2016

    Citywire Munich 2016

  • Citywire Paris Alt Ucits 2016

    Citywire Paris Alt Ucits 2016

  • Citywire Zurich Alt Ucits 2016

    Citywire Zurich Alt Ucits 2016