Citywire Selector - For Professional Investors

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

Frontier star sets sights on EM upgrade candidates

Frontier star sets sights on EM upgrade candidates

Frontier markets such as Pakistan and Vietnam are showing how countries formerly described as 'basket cases' can provide a positive upside surprise.

That is according to Charlemagne Capital’s Dominic Bokor-Ingram who runs several funds at Charlemagne, including the Charlemagne Magna New Frontiers fund.

Bokor-Ingram said countris like Pakistan and Vietnam are looking to grow at 6-7% per year over the next 5-10 years, which will not just provide earnings growth but a re-rating of shares, which could double investors' money.

Ingram, who runs the fund alongside Citywire AAA-rated Stefan Bottcher, currently has 17% allocated to Pakistan.

It was recently announced that Pakistan would be reclassified to emerging market status to coincide with the May 2017 semi-annual index review.

'For us at the beginning of 2013 Pakistan was a un-investable market, the politics were a mess, the security situation was a mess, and you wouldn’t go to Pakistan let alone invest there.'

'When the new government was elected in 2013 it was very reformist and it was the one time we made an effort to meet politicians as we wanted to see what the new guys were like.'

Reform: the key to success

Ingram believes strong changes made by the Pakistani government within the first 100 days of taking office have been key to the success the country has achieved.

'From day one they had solid plans as to what they would do to get the economy going again. They decided to issue a euro bond and to sell mobile phone spectrum, they wanted to get cash in, to get the system moving again.'

'Within 100 days they had done all of this and that's the key for us, whether its politicians or managers, what you say you will do and what you have then done three months later.'

Ingram currently has one Pakistani company in the fund's top ten holdings, which is commercial banking company HBL, which is based in Karachi.

'The country is coming from a low base but we could easily see 6-8% growth for a very long time. Following the government's rapid progress, we looked to companies in Pakistan to see if corporate governance was good enough to invest.'

'A couple of months later we found some investments and we continue to build the portfolio. We want countries to come from being basket cases, go through a reform process and then get upgraded because that’s when you make the money.'

Eyes to the East: Vietnam

Ingram looks to one of his top three holdings Vinamilk, which is currently the only consumer staples company in the top ten positions of the fund, as an example of how foreign investment has benefitted Vietnam.

'In the last three weeks Vinamilk has had its foreign ownership limit removed and it will now go into the FTSE Vietnam index,' he said.

'The ETFs will buy it, it will go into the MSCI index and all of a sudden it becomes an investable company trading at 25% discount to any other dairy company in the region, which is why it is one of our top three holdings right now.'

The Charlemagne Magna New Frontiers fund returned 30.68% in US dollar terms since inception in November 2013. Its Citywire-assigned benchmark, the MSCI Frontier Markets TR USD returned 1.56% over the same time period.

Leave a comment!

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