Janus Henderson explores biotech

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The UK-based firm is the latest to join the growing number of asset managers that have launched thematic products in Asia.

Janus Henderson is expected to roll out the Biotechnology Fund and the Global Sustainable Equity Fund in Singapore, according to records from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

Janus Henderson is still waiting for approval from the MAS, the regulator’s records show.

A Singapore-based spokesman for the firm declined to provide more details, such as the funds’ expected launch dates and if they will also be available in Hong Kong, until the MAS greenlights the products, he explained.

The Biotechnology Fund, which is a Luxembourg-domiciled Sicav Ucits product, was first rolled out in Europe in December last year, as reported by FSA’s sister publication International Adviser. The fund is co-managed by Andy Acker and Dan Lyons, who have at least 40 years of combined experience in investing in biotechnology.

The fund invests in biotechnology and related companies globally, according to the fund’s prospectus. The universe includes companies that are in the Nasdaq Biotechnology Index and those that develop biologic drugs.

The fund managers aim to select undervalued companies with greater potential for clinical and commercial success than is currently reflected in market prices.

The firm said that it makes use of “statistical models and scientific expertise” to analyse the probability of success for drugs in clinical development. It also said it includes the perspective of physicians, patients and payers to evaluate the commercial prospects for new and existing therapies.

Holdings and country breakdown of the Janus Henderson – Horizon Biotechnology Fund

Source: fund factsheet

 

There are only a few biotechnology-focused products available in Hong Kong and Singapore, with the majority of them only available to accredited investors in the Lion City, according to data from FE.

Biotechnology funds in Hong Kong and Singapore

 

Available to Singapore retail investors

Available to Singapore accredited investors

Available to Hong Kong retail investors

Invesco – Nasdaq Biotech Ucits ETF

No

Yes

No

Pictet Biotech

No

Yes

No

UBS (Lux) Equity Biotech

No

Yes

No

Varopartner Sicav Sectorial Biotech Opportunities

No

Yes

No

Candrian Equities L Biotech

No

Yes

No

Franklin Biotechnology Discovery

Yes

Yes

Yes

Polar Capital Biotechnology

No

Yes

No

Mirae Asset – Horizon Biotech ETF

No

No

Yes

Source: FE Analytics

In Hong Kong, only two SFC-registered biotechnology funds are available: the Franklin Biotechnology Discovery Fund and the Mirae Asset – Horizon Biotech ETF, which was launched in July.

Sustainable fund

Like the biotech product, the Global Sustainable Fund is also a Luxembourg Ucits product and was rolled out in Europe in May, according to a statement from the firm that was released at the product launch.

The fund replicates the UK-domiciled Global Sustainable Equity OEIC strategy, which was incepted in 1991. As of the end of August, the OEIC fund had £932m ($1.1bn) in assets, data from FE shows.

The fund is managed by Hamis Chamberlayne, who is also the firm’s head of sustainable and responsible investments and manages institutional global responsible mandates, according to the statement.

The product aims to invest in equities of global companies with products and services that are contributing to positive environmental or social change, according to the fund’s prospectus.

Holdings, country and sector breakdown of the Global Sustainable Equity Fund

Source: fund factsheet of the Global Sustainable Equity OEIC Fund in the UK

Thematic push

Janus Henderson joins a number of firms who have been pushing thematic products in the region, the latest being Nikko Asset Management, which recently received approval from the MAS to launch the Ark Disruptive Innovation Fund, according to the regulator’s records.

Other managers include UOB Asset Management, which launched in June a global innovation fund in Singapore. Allianz Global Investors is also expected to launch three thematic products in Singapore, while Blackrock received approval from both the MAS and SFC to launch three thematic funds.

In Hong Kong, Amundi Asset Management is preparing for the launch of an education-focused fund. Value Partners also rolled out in February the Asian Innovation Opportunities Fund, which is a mixed-asset product.

However, several of the region’s private banks and wealth managers have cautioned that they would avoid investing in narrowly-focused themes.

 


The Janus Henderson Horizon Biotechnology Fund versus its benchmark index

Source: FE Analytics. In US dollars.

 

The Janus Henderson Global Sustainable Equity OEIC Fund (UK-domiciled) versus its benchmark index

Source: FE Analytics. In US dollars.

 

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