Magellan Financial Group plans to launch four new global funds to be managed from Sydney, for the institutional as well as retail market, following the success of its $350 million listed investment company (LIC).

Magellan Financial Group plans to launch four new global funds to be managed from Sydney, for the institutional as well as retail market, following the success of its $350 million listed investment company (LIC). Magellan is the former hedge fund business and listed entity of Pengana Capital which was re-capitalised by two former investment bankers, Chris McKay and Hamish Douglas, and with new cornerstone investors Consolidated Press and Sussan clothes store owner, Naomi Melgram. Frank Casarotti, the former Colonial First State head of distribution who heads up Magellan’s marketing effort, said yesterday that the Magellan LIC – the largest of its kind – was now about 60 per cent invested and the firm’s focus was on building up a traditional funds management operation. He was hopeful that the new funds would be open for business within the next two-and-a-half months. The funds are: a global financial services fund, a global ‘brands’ fund, a global listed infrastructure fund and a global concentrated or high conviction fund. The infrastructure fund is being run by two former partners in Capital Partners, an infrastructure specialist – Gerald Slack and Denis Eager. The financial services portfolio is being run by Heath Beamkhe, formerly from Perennial, and the global brand portfolio by Jackie Fernley, formerly from Suncorp Investment Management. Casarotti said the funds would adopt a value-orientated style. “We’re investing only in industries we like,” he said, “in stocks with healthy balance sheets, good growth prospects and at reasonable prices.” One of the LIC’s major investments has been in the US student loans company Sally Mae, which is currently under takeover offer by a private equity consortium. The global brands fund would focus on big consumer companies, Casarotti said, which had developed an “economic moat” or a privileged and protected position in the marketplace. The concentrated portfolio would draw on the best ideas of the other three funds, but not exclusively.

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