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Active portfolios post stellar returns

Two actively managed global equities portfolios have vastly outperformed their peers and respective benchmarks, with one fund manager delivering a whopping 96% for the year.

Vision Super's Innovation and Disruption Option, managed by Baillie Gifford, delivered a staggering 70.76% p.a. and 96.18% p.a. for its super and pension plan respectively.

On an annualised basis it returned 28.8% p.a. as at September2020 since inception, while its benchmark delivered 6.4%, beating it almost fivefold.

Vision Super chief investment officer Michael Wyrsch told Financial Standard that it has been a "tremendous period" for the Innovation and Disruption Option, but is cognisant that such stellar performance is fleeting.

"There will be periods of underperformance," he said.

"We have seen the changes brought about by COVID-19, and economies and companies will not be going back to how they were operating at the pre-pandemic period - which is a win for this portfolio."

Some of the holdings in the sector-agnostic strategy include global companies such as Tencent, Amazon, Atlassian, Tesla, Oscar Health, Shopify, online fitness company Peloton, and companies operating in online banking and food delivery. It also invests in companies that have not yet listed.

"It is a volatile option, so it is a long-term investment that aims to perform better than the general equity market," Wyrsch said.

In 10 years' time, he noted that the portfolio could be investing in very different companies.

"It depends where the disruption and growth is occurring. It would not invest in industries of the past such as the coal sector, for example," he said.

Meanwhile, UniSuper's ethical product, the Global Environmental Opportunities Option, a $1.5 billion portfolio, returned 34% p.a. according to Rainmaker's August MySuper performance tables, making it the top performer in the ESG category.

Actively managed in-house, the option invests in companies like Cleanaway, Samsung, SolarEdge Technologies, East Japan Railway, Citrix, Tesla, and Enphase Energy, based on a positive screening process.

Over a seven-year period, it delivered 11.9% p.a., outperforming its benchmark by 5.9% p.a. (as at June 2020).

Read more: TeslaVision SuperSuperannuationMichael WyrschAmazonAtlassianAugust MySuperBaillie GiffordCitrixCleanawayEast Japan RailwayEnphase EnergyFinancial StandardGlobal Environmental OpportunitiesOscar HealthPelotonRainmakerSamsungShopifySolarEdge TechnologiesTencentUniSuper
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