Asset Management Awards for Excellence 2021 – Best Fund Provider – Thematic Equity

Best Fund Provider Thematic Equity


Credit Suisse Asset Management

Best Fund Provider – Thematic Equity

Christina Kautzky

head of Distribution, Non-Japan Asia
Credit Suisse Asset Management

“On behalf of CSAM and the Thematic Equities Team, we are honoured to accept this award, which recognises our unique approach to thematic investing, and CSAM’s ability to provide investors with pure play exposure to the companies that are transforming our world in everything from healthcare to robotics, security and the environment.

The Asian Private Banker award is particularly meaningful as there is such an emphasis on input from our private banks partners, who are the backbone of our success in thematics, and who have paved the way for investors in the region to benefit from a new approach to thematic investing.”

Winners rationale

Since 2006 and the launch of its flagship Security Fund, Credit Suisse Asset Management (CSAM) has forged a reputation as a global specialist in thematic investing, anchored by its astute identification (and classification) of structural drivers of disruption and change, a unique and rounded product suite that speaks intimately to those drivers, and a disciplined investment process that emphasises ‘purity’ and delivers results.

Indeed, CSAM is one of the few fund houses to implement a ‘pure play’ approach to thematic investing by requiring companies within an investible universe to derive at least 50% of their revenues from the relevant theme. Those proprietary universes cover such themes as Digital Health, Robotics, Security, Edutainment and Environmental Impact. They are typically populated by small- and mid-cap companies that demonstrate strong management and governance, as well as best-in-class technology, and whose sectors have a high barrier to entry, thereby increasing the probability that they will emerge as dominant leaders in their niches in years to come.

Moreover, the vastly experienced team behind CSAM’s thematics offering takes a long-term, fundamentally-driven approach to research and selection, eschewing headline noise and broad-brushstroke actions (such as under or overweighting benchmark countries or sectors) to focus on the intersection of trends and companies, problems and solutions, and technology and its reach.

This disciplined and differentiated approach has produced superior outperformance and driven strong inflows, including via a growing list of major private banks in Asia that have onboarded CSAM.

For instance, the firm’s Digital Health Equity Fund — which invests globally in companies driving a revolution in the health care sector through the application of technology — was up almost 50% at the end of September against a flattish reference benchmark and continues to register meaningful inflows via Asia’s private banks; the Credit Suisse (Lux) Edutainment Equity Fund, rolled out in September 2019, was up more than 30% over a one-year period; and the recently launched Credit Suisse (Lux) Environmental Impact Equity Fund — which invests in companies that have the potential to generate positive impact through tackling environmental challenges across sustainable infrastructure, resources, waste mitigation and carbon reduction technologies — is already striking a chord with investors keen to contribute to positive environmental change while generating returns.

This traction would not be possible without a ten-strong, dedicated sales and service team spread across Hong Kong, Singapore, and South Korea. The team goes the extra mile to transmit the story of each theme to clients, with an emphasis on personalised, bespoke servicing and thought leadership that connects clients with key stakeholders across these themes.

The Thematic Equity category was one of the most hotly-contested this year, pointing to the cornerstone role thematic funds will continue to play in investor portfolios this generation. And Credit Suisse Asset Management demonstrated that it is the go-to manager for erudite, meaningful, and performance-generating strategies for the future.

Credit Suisse Asset Management is Asian Private Banker’s Best Fund Provider – Thematic Equity for 2021.

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