Fund description and investment return objective
The Antares Small Companies Fund is an actively managed Australian shares fund designed to enhance returns by investing in a diversified portfolio of Australian small companies.
The Fund’s objective is to outperform the Benchmark by 5% (before fees) per annum over a rolling 5 year period.
The Antares Small Companies Fund delivered a return of -4.5% (net of fees) for the month of January, outperforming its benchmark index by 0.6%.1
The Australian sharemarket fell sharply in response to disappointing growth data in China and the volatility in the Chinese sharemarket, reaching its lowest level since 2013. The market managed to recover some of its losses but the S&P/ASX Small Ordinaries Accumulation Index still ended the month down 5.1% which was broadly in line with the overall market.
The Fund benefited from a significant overweight position in IDP Education (IEL) that outperformed the index by 8% in January following its successful IPO in late November 2015. We built up a solid overweight position in IDP during the IPO and bought more on the opening day. We continue to view IDP as a high quality growth business with high barriers to entry. An overweight position in Sedgman (SDM) also made a positive contribution to the Fund’s relative performance. SDM received a take-over bid from CIMIC Group, the company’s largest shareholder which held 37% prior to the transaction. CIMIC has bid $1.07 per share, up 36% on the prior sale. The board is considering its position and has recommended shareholders take no action at this stage.
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