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Sturgeon Capital launches first Central Asia-focused UCITS hedge fund

Thursday, October 25, 2012
Opalesque Industry Update - Sturgeon Capital is an alternative investment manager focused on Central Asian markets. Founded in 2006 with the launch of the flagship Sturgeon Central Asia Fund, the Firm has been managing public equities, fixed income and private equity investments in Central Asia for 6 years. Sturgeon Capital now also manages Tau Capital, a London AIM-listed closed end fund investing in public and private equities in Kazakhstan and the surrounding markets.

Although a long-bias strategy, Sturgeon’s experience in investing in regional equities and understanding of the specific macro influences affecting regional markets will be leveraged to maximise returns.

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 and the supporting regional macro growth dynamics.

“We have been investing in regional equities, both locally and internationally listed, since the Firm was founded. 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” said Taco Sieburgh Sjoerdsma, CFO of Sturgeon Capital.

Clemente Cappello, founder and CIO of Sturgeon Capital commented that “in our 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”.

The Fund has a strong supporting infrastructure with Credit Suisse providing custodian and administration services out of Luxembourg, as well as brokerage support. As management company Lemanik Asset Management S.A. is providing risk management and distribution support. Steve Bernat, Head of Global Distribution for Lemanik said “We are delighted to partner up with Sturgeon Capital and provide their Fund with a robust risk management infrastructure. This has become paramount in today's environment, where investors are looking for protection in a highly controlled framework. We also believe that there are great distribution opportunities for the new Fund as investors are keen on established, well performing managers that can offer niche products”.

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.

Press release

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