April 13, 2012

2012 SMA International Equity Manager of the Year, No. 1: Invesco Ltd.

Stable team and bottom-up stock picks set his group apart, CIO Clas Olsson says

 

(Clas Olsson, CIO of the International Growth Equity team at Invesco.)

2012 International Equity Manager of the Year, No. 1:

Invesco Ltd.
International ADR Growth SMA/Wrap

This is an expanded profile of one of Investment Advisor-Prima Capital's 8th annual Separately Managed Account Managers of the Year. View the complete article with all the winners here. Read about the process of choosing this year's winners here.

Truth be told, the voting committee at Prima was so impressed with both of the primary nominees in the International Equity Category that they couldn’t pick one over the other, so they gave it to them both. It’s a good problem to have and reflects the quality of the management in the space overall.

Three key ingredients—philosophy, team and process—helped Invesco’s International ADR Growth SMA/Wrap make this year’s cut.

If you haven’t heard of Invesco, you’re probably living under a rock, but we’ll provide the basics anyway. The firm is based in Atlanta and is an independent global investment manager providing worldwide investment management capabilities in a wide range of investment strategies and vehicles to retail, institutional and high-net-worth clients around the world.

“We’re bottom-up stock pickers,” says Clas Olsson, CIO of the International Growth Equity team at Invesco when describing the philosophy. “We employ EQV, which stands for earnings, quality and valuation, when looking to purchase high-quality growth companies at attractive prices. And we’re true active managers; we’re not looking to replicate a benchmark.”

Olsson says he and his team are long-term investors, with 20% to 30% turnover of the maximum 75 stocks in the portfolio.

“We also have a stable team in place,” he adds. “The portfolio management team has worked together for over 10 years, and most of us arrived at the firm in the mid-1990s.”

The team is stable, diversified, experienced—and most interestingly—from different nationalities, something that gives them a unique global perspective that differentiates them from other management teams in the space.

“It’s very much a team-managed strategy,” he generously states. “I get written up and get all the accolades, but we all participate in getting the shareholders’ returns. Our process has been in place since 1992, it’s been through good market cycles and bad. It’s time-tested and it works.”

Prima agrees, noting “The Invesco International Growth strategy is a good choice for investors seeking international large cap quality-growth exposure. Lead portfolio manager Clas Olsson has managed the strategy since 2001 and we have a positive opinion of the team that supports them. In terms of style, Olsson is conservative in his approach to investing in growth companies; thus, we expect the portfolio to generally lag in up markets, but protect in down markets. Overall, the investment team has demonstrated its ability to execute on its stated strategy and Prima has confidence that it will be able to add value going forward.”

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On April 11, Prima Capital's research team will be hosted a 30-minute Web seminar for advisors covering the key elements of performance attribution and manager portfolio positioning in the equity, fixed income and alternative areas of the market for the first quarter.

Read about the Prima Capital/Investment Advisor 2011 SMA Managers of the Year.

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