Co-presenters Jamie Green, editorial director of the Investment Advisor Group of Summit Business Media, and Gib Watson, group president of Envestnet | Prima, noted that 1,600 managers were reviewed before picking the winners in four major categories, and that the “strategies not only had to be repeatable and sustainable, but also could be clearly articulated to advisors and clients.”
Green also noted that multiyear performance, rather than just one year’s performance, was considered.
— U.S. Equity Large-Cap Award
The first award in U.S. Equity Large-Cap went to Robeco Boston Partners for its BP Large-Cap Value strategy.
“The strategy is an excellent option for investors seeking a relative value large-cap manager, which we believe has identifiable and sustainable competitive advantages as well as a clearly articulated alpha thesis,” Green said in announcing the award. “The team’s alpha thesis is based on exploiting three market anomalies: the valuation anomaly, momentum anomaly and quality anomaly by using a systematic investment process that blends quantitative and fundamental analysis.
Green added that while several active managers seek to exploit these well-known anomalies, we do believe this team possesses an analytical edge with respect to consistently identifying attractively valued stocks with strong fundamentals, profitability and improving business momentum given the team’s deep experience as well as its disciplined process.
St. Louis-based Wedgewood Partners took home the second award, a repeat of a win in 2011, for its Large-Cap Focused Growth strategy.
“With respect to the team’s alpha thesis, it seeks to identify stocks that it believes are mispriced in the short term, as investors are often overly concerned with near-term events while this team is focused on the long-term sustainability of growth,” Watson said. “While the team’s alpha thesis is common amongst long-only active managers, the team does approach the large-cap growth space in a differentiated manner from the vast majority of its competitors.”
— U.S. Equity Small-, Mid- or SMID-Cap Award
Earnest Partners took home the third award for its Mid-Cap Core strategy.
“Like many long-only equity managers, Earnest believes valuation along with earnings growth will drive stock prices over a full market cycle and lead to relative outperformance over a passive index if such securities are overweighted in a diversified portfolio,” Green said. “However, unlike most managers, Earnest has built out a very unique investment team, which we believe is the firm’s edge and will be the driver of excess returns. Indeed, instead of hiring personnel with buy- or sell-side investment-related experience, the firm takes a different approach in hiring research analysts that have substantial real-world industry or sector-specific experience.”