Allan Gray has won the coveted award seven times, overtaking the record it held jointly with its Mother City rival, Coronation Fund Managers, which has won it six times.
The runners-up for the management company award were PSG Asset Management in second place (who were also second last year) and a newcomer to the top three, boutique asset manager Mi-Plan in third place.
Coronation, which had a miserable year overall in 2018, ended up well down in the manager rankings, in 8th place.
The Raging Bull Awards, hosted each year by Personal Finance, ProfileData and PlexCrown, and held this year in association with Vunani Limited, recognises outstanding performance by unit trust fund managers. Individual, actively managed funds are judged on straight performance over three years and on risk-adjusted performance over five years. Management companies are judged on the risk-adjusted performance of their qualifying funds over five years - in this case to the end of 2018.
Risk-adjusted performance for the Raging Bull Awards is measured using the PlexCrown Ratings system. Funds are rated from one (lowest) to five (highest) PlexCrowns.
Speaking to Independent Media after the event, Allan Gray’s head of distribution and Orbis client servicing, Tamryn Lamb, said Allan Gray was incredibly proud to receive such a well-known and well-respected accolade. She said, though, that while industry awards were important, and they validated Allan Gray’s achievements, the focus at the firm was “on the value we can create for clients over the very long term. And we’ve been successful over the long term because we have made sure that our investment process is very robust”.
Lamb said the awards were important to investors because they provided a consistent way of evaluating the performance of asset managers.
Top three managers
1. Allan Gray. To the end of December 2018, five of Allan Gray’s eight qualifying funds scored five PlexCrowns. These were its funds investing in the domestic market: the Allan Gray Equity Fund, Allan Gray Bond Fund, and three multi-asset funds - the Allan Gray Balanced Fund, Allan Gray Optimal Fund, and Allan Gray Stable Fund. Three rand-denominated global and worldwide funds - the Allan Gray-Orbis Global Equity Feeder Fund, Allan Gray-Orbis Global Fund of Funds, and Allan Gray-Orbis Global Optimal Fund of Funds - scored four, four and one PlexCrown respectively. Taking into account different weightings of fund categories, Allan Gray achieved an overall rating of 4.835 PlexCrowns
2. PSG also had eight qualifying funds, of which three scored five PlexCrowns. These were the PSG Equity Fund, PSG Balanced Fund and PSG Flexible Fund. Three funds - the PSG Global Flexible Feeder Fund, PSG Diversified Income Fund and PSG Stable Fund - scored four PlexCrowns. Two funds scored three Plexcrowns: the PSG Global Equity Feeder Fund and PSG Income Fund. The manager’s overall rating was 4.484 PlexCrowns.
3. Mi-Plan is a boutique manager based in Newlands, Cape Town, that, like Allan Gray and PSG, had eight qualifying funds. According to its website, each fund is “a ‘single-manager fund’, which allows each manager’s style and skill to come to the fore, and as our managers are not constrained by consensus or a house view, they act with conviction to take focused positions, even when this puts them at odds with the herd”. Two of Mi-Plan’s eight funds scored five PlexCrowns: these were the Mi-Plan IP Global Macro Fund and the Mi-Plan IP Inflation Plus 7 Fund. Two - the Mi-Plan IP Beta Equity Fund and Mi-Plan Enhanced Income Fund - scored four PlexCrowns. Its remaining funds - the Mi-Plan IP Global Property Feeder Fund, Mi-Plan IP Sarasin Equisar Feeder Fund, Mi-Plan IP Inflation Plus 3 Fund and Mi-Plan IP Inflation Plus 5 Fund - scored three PlexCrowns. The manager’s overall rating was 4.133 PlexCrowns.