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Alternative Market Briefing

New aviation fund returns 20% in February by betting on recovery

Monday, March 08, 2021

Mohshin Aziz
B. G., Opalesque Geneva:

2020 resulted in the worst ever global airline financial performance. From a position where 2019 profits were just under $26bn, losses are expected to be over $118bn in 2020, according to KPMG. The prevailing hope is that the vaccine will allow for some form of summer season, but this remains to be seen. Like previous downturns, there will be winners and losers. Those that manage cash burn and maintain liquidity will be best placed to prosper.

A fund seized this opportunity and launched in early January. In February, the NAV of the Pangolin Aviation Recovery Fund rose 20.10% (net) to US$112.20.

"Airlines and online travel agencies (OTA) have performed well in February 2021," says portfolio manager Mohshin Aziz in a monthly report. "The average month-on-month return for both airlines and OTA in February was 21%. This is the second-highest monthly returns for both sectors since 2010. The highest month-on-month return was achieved in November 2020 when news of the successful Covid-19 vaccines came out. We missed the November 2020 party, but we rocked this one."

The fund invests (long and short) in aviation-related businesses. It is 89% invested, spread across five industry sectors and five continents. The top-five holdings represent 50.3% of the portfolio: Shanghai Airport, Spirit Aerosystems, Japa......................

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