Boutique firm offers dividend and capital growth returns
David Horner is managing director and founder of GBP650 million boutique investment firm Chelverton Asset Management. A specialist in managing small and mid-cap portfolios, the firm runs two OEICs and two investment trusts in its listed business.
Chelverton also creates and manages unquoted investments for the Chelverton Investor Club, where the investment is mostly made under EIS.
Horner began his career as an accountant, working in Corporate Finance for 3i plc and then Strand Partners where he was involved in restructuring and refinancing small public companies. The difficult investment year of 1998 saw him make a brave call, establishing Chelverton with an investment trust, the Chelverton Growth Trust, which invests in smaller public companies and, more recently, unquoted opportunities.
The difficult investment markets around 1998/99 raised opportunities around income and the firm subsequently launched its top-performing Chelverton Small Companies Dividend Trust, a vehicle the firm is looking to grow.
2005 saw Chelverton partner Dave Taylor join the firm and it moved into OEICs, launching in 2006 what has become the UK Equity Income Fund, with a yield in excess of 4 per cent. In October 2014 Chelverton launched its UK Growth Fund, this newest addition to its stable sitting at the top of the charts since launch and top in its sector after just one year of trading.
“My aims are to have good investment performance from our funds and for the team to enjoy working at Chelverton.” Horner says. The ex-FTSE investment pools in which Chelverton fishes are not deep, so the firm wants to grow steadily and will be unlikely to manage billions.
“Wealth managers are amongst our most typical investors,” Horner says, “but as the funds have got bigger and better known, other advisers have come along. We launched the growth fund on the back of the success of our income proposition in the small and mid-cap space.
“Advisers who know us understand our position and our proposition”, says Horner, “but a lot of people don’t know us at all. We want to grow in a controlled manner. People find the income proposition extremely attractive, and people are casting around for income – and that is not going to change any time soon.”