Sturgeon Launches Central Asia UCITS Fund

Oct 25 2012 | 8:22am ET

London-based alternative investment manager Sturgeon Capital has launched a Central-Asia focused UCITS hedge fund.

The Sturgeon Central Asia Equities Fund will invest primarily in equity securities of companies listed on regulated markets but which have a substantial exposure to Central Asia. It's a long-bias strategy but Sturgeon says its experience will allow it to maximize returns.

Sturgeon already runs two funds focused on the region—its flagship Sturgeon Central Asia Fund, launched in 2006, and Tau Capital, a London AIM-listed closed-end fund focused on Kazhstan and surrounding markets—and has been investing in public equities, fixed income and private equity in Central Asia for six years.

“We have been investing in regional equities, both locally and internationally listed, since the firm was founded,” said Taco Sieburgh Sjoerdsma, CFO of Sturgeon Capital, in a statement. “Investors have often asked us to create an equity-only strategy focused on Central Asia and we have always considered doing so since 2006. We have been watching local stocks and markets for over 12 months with a view to launching such a strategy, and in our view this is now an excellent time to do so.”
Clemente Cappello, founder and CIO of Sturgeon Capital said that in their view “it is an opportune time to be investing in Central Asian equities. Our analysis of companies listed on developed markets but with substantial exposure to the region has shown that whilst value metrics such as earnings per share, dividend yield, cash on balance sheet, etc. all continue to rise, regional share prices have had a terrible run. Even a moderate re-rating of these companies could see prices rise substantially. Additionally this region trades to large discounts not only to developed markets, but most notably to other frontier markets. Essentially the new Fund is a way for retail and institutional investors alike to gain exposure to liquid, deep value stocks with significant growth potential backed by a compelling regional macro story.”
Credit Suisse is providing custodian and administration services out of Luxembourg, as well as brokerage support and Lemanik Asset Management is providing risk management and distribution support.

The Fund is initially available in USD, EUR and GBP share classes. The minimum initial investment for retail investors is USD/EUR/GBP 5,000 and 200,000 for institutional investors. Domiciled in Luxembourg as a sub-fund of Sturgeon Capital Funds UCITS SICAV, the Sturgeon Central Asia Equities Fund has weekly dealing with no notice period or exit fees.

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