e-fundresearch: Which benchmark do you adhere to?
Kaiser: MSCI India 10/40 and MSCI China 10/40
e-fundresearch: Are you also responsible for other funds at the moment?
Kaiser: I am part of the equity team who is responsible for our global funds.
e-fundresearch: What is the total volume that you manage in all your funds?
Kaiser: € 370 m (end of September 2010).
e-fundresearch: Regarding the performance: which performance did you achieve since the beginning of the year and in the years 2003-2008? Absolutely and relatively to the relevant benchmark?
The fund was launched June 2004
The fund was launched Oct. 2003
e-fundresearch: How content are you with your own performance in the last years and this year?
Kaiser: Overall I am very happy with the performance in a difficult, volatile environment. Total returns since I took over as portfolio manager rank our funds in the best third of our peer group. And I am especially happy with the results relative to the level of risk we have taken.
e-fundresearch: How are you able to deliver added value for your investors with your performance?
Kaiser: Our strategy will not reward investors with spectacular outperformance in a given year. Our aim is long term solid results – consistency is very important for us. We believe our focus on valuation and momentum can contribute with excess return in the long run, so that our investors will get well diversified portfolios of stocks that are cheaper than the overall market but also show better earnings.
e-fundresearch: How long have you been a fund manager already?
Kaiser: Since 2000.
e-fundresearch: What were your biggest successes and your biggest disappointments in your career as fund manager?
Kaiser: In 2007 we won a Lipper Award for best overall (equity and fixed income) performance among smaller fund managers. I took that as a very fine recognition of our work with a very clear, focused investment process on both equities and fixed income products.
I also managed to get a 5-star Morningstar rating for the first fund I managed, a US equity fund.
Biggest disappointment was the poor performance of our global funds the 12 months after the Lehman collapse. We manage those as a team – all equity managers. And we were caught on the wrong leg two times in that period. That is at least one too much. But we have made lots of improvement to our process and portfolios, so that future returns will be more robust.
e-fundresearch: What kind of capital market situation do we have at the moment? How do you act in this environment?
Kaiser: The new normal will in my opinion result in sub par growth because of high leverage and poor jobs outlook for consumers in the developed world. I think investors will increasingly look for exposure to large emerging economies to get exposure to growth.
In developed markets, large corporations will look for local takeover targets – low valuations creates a lot of opportunities for M&A. In emerging markets there is plenty of topline growth for most companies, so we can continue to focus on buying cheap companies with earnings momentum – the tide will lift most boats.
e-fundresearch: What are the special challenges in this environment?
Kaiser: The debt crisis of southern Europe (and potentially other places), small but growing signs of protectionism in the west and capital restrictions in east and quantitative easing are currently my biggest concerns. It is very difficult to predict the long term outcome of these. And they could all cause a lot of pain on emerging equity markets.
e-fundresearch: What objectives do you have till the end of the year and in the mid term for the upcoming 3 to 5 years?
Kaiser: 2-3% excess return every year is our target.
e-fundresearch: Do you model yourself on someone? Any ideals?
Kaiser: Warren Buffet is a great inspiration. I like his thinking on value investing, understanding what you invest in and having a systematic approach.
e-fundresearch: What motivates you in your job?
Kaiser: Success - making excess return for our investors – and working in a team of very competent people.
e-fundresearch: What else do you want to achieve or do you have any further aims as a fund manager?
Kaiser: I consider myself very fortunate to cover two very interesting, fast growing equity markets. If I can create excess return in those and continue to refine our investment process I will consider myself successful.
e-fundresearch: What other profession would you have taken interest in, apart from becoming a fund manager?
Kaiser: I think management consulting could have been very interesting.
e-fundresearch: Thank you for the interview!