The Fund’s objective is to provide uncorrelated returns, through building positions around corporate events. A streamlined process is used to select a limited number of positions presenting the right catalyst and probability of delivering the expected returns and at the same time, with limited downside. CIAM predominantly invests in mid and large cap companies and is sector agnostic. CIAM is particularly focused on identifying companies with specific corporate governance issues that have a detrimental impact on the value of their shares. In cases where CIAM becomes a more active investor, with a goal to obtain the fair value for its investment, the team prefers to engage, wherever possible, through a constructive private dialogue with boards and management teams.
Latest Meeting Note
Meeting 06 Nov 2019
The research team met with CIAM at a cap-intro conference. CIAM is a European event driven fund with an activist angle. The firm currently manages about $750m (UCITS is $330m), female owned with 25% of net performance fees donated to cha... Read more
The research team met with CIAM at a cap-intro conference. CIAM is a European event driven fund with an activist angle. The firm currently manages about $750m (UCITS is $330m), female owned with 25% of net performance fees donated to charity. CIAM’s investment strategy is based on three main pillars: 1) they run high conviction portfolios driven by research, core focus is on Western Europe with an ‘engagement’ rather than activist approach; 2) they don’t run with lots of leverage (1.2x historically); 3) risk management is key, with maximum position size driven by downside risk (3% of AUM per position). The merger arbitrage sleeve is 20% to 30% of the overall portfolio and the focus is on wide-spread opportunities (at least 7% on a gross basis) with a typical transaction period of up to 5 months. The second sleeve is more of a Special Situations approach (9-12 months average holding period). The fund looks for opportunities based on a number of ‘thematic’ lenses including failed deals and reference owner share class structures. After this screening fundamental analysis is used to identify stocks that are trading cheap but where a catalyst is on the horizon. The third (and final) sleeve is engagement/activism, generally employed around announced deal situations or special situations. Crucially there always has to be a monetisation event/exit point to help the firm realise the under valuation. Ownership stakes are usually sized at 1-2% rather than 5%, this is sufficient to get access. Legal protection for minority shareholders is good in Europe and they use this to their advantage. An activist approach typically takes 6-7 months (as opposed to years) as they are not looking to lock up capital.