Imara Asset Management Overview

Imara Asset Management seeks attractive real absolute returns via the benefits of owing advantaged business over long time periods, while looking to avoid the risks of speculating on financial assets.

  • A Dynamic and Disciplined Investment Approach

    Having the opinion that the primary risk is the permanent impairment of capital, Imara Asset Management is benchmark agnostic and the fund has no cash limits - cash is the residual of the investment process. Imara has a reputation as investment managers to select institutions and our disciplined investment approach allows us to be able to meet our private clients’ unique investment requirements.

    Volatile and stressed socio-political and economic environments call for dynamic investment management.
    We believe in a disciplined fundamental approach to investment.
    Consistent superior investment performance is the product of emphasising and identifying economic, socio-economic and business trends ahead of general consensus.
    A close relationship with our client forms the essence of our investment management service.
    Our Investment Team assesses the needs of their clients taking into account their various risk tolerances and performance benchmarks before formulating an investment portfolio based on our house view, or institutional client instructions.
    Portfolios are managed to achieve the best possible returns within precisely tailored personalised parameters of risk and return.
    The increased volatility of markets worldwide requires greater awareness of the risk/reward ratio of particular investment vehicles.
    Capital protection and appropriate interest income streams are paramount considerations for our fixed income and property loan stock/trust exposure.
    Selectivity and focus on sustainable and predictable earnings delivery caters for our equity market stance.

    Performance is measured with regard to each client’s risk/reward profile and against pre-determined benchmarks.

  • Equity Selection Criteria
    A top down and bottom up approach is applied for assessing investment opportunities. Top down analysis plays a key role in asset class selection as well as sector selection.
    Macro economic trends as well as the political environment play important roles in terms of overall sector analysis as these factors often highlight investment anomalies in terms of value and risk.
    Research, internally as well as external is used to derive an approved share list known as our houseview portfolio. Quality of management, financial strength, cash flow and whether the company has a strong franchise and competitive edge within the industry are key considerations.
    Whenever possible we visit the companies we invest in and maintain regular contact with management to keep up to date with any material developments.
    We attend results presentations in all the companies we invest in and regularly attend sight visits organised by the company or the investment community.
    Different valuation techniques far as appropriate are used depending on the industry and type of company being analysed. Our methodologies include DCF, sum of the parts, Price to book and Price Earnings measures for valuation purposes. We take cognisance of the fact that DCF analysis does have shortcomings due to the forecast risk in long-term models as well as the large weighting the terminal value has in this approach. In terms of PE valuations it is our view that value in absolute terms might not always reflect the true state of affairs as often stocks are overly cheap or expensive for specific reasons being stock related or industry related.
    We invest for the long term and are part owners of the companies we invest in. We are not traders with our funds typically having a fairly low churn rate.
    We do not invest in industries and companies we do not understand.

    It is important to emphasise that apart from our monthly investment committee meetings where the houseview portfolio is reviewed, the houseview can change any time within that period if material changes in the investment climate occur or stock specific issues arise. A key strength of Imara Asset Management is the relatively small size of the investment team, which allows swift implementation of investment ideas or any changes that might occur both from a macro and stock specific point of view.

  • Investment Philosophy

    Imara believes in a disciplined fundamental approach:

    All investment decisions are made in terms of a medium to long-term horizon.
    We adopt both a top-down and bottom-up approach in developing our investment strategy. In particular we place strong emphasis on identifying changes in monetary policy, structural reform, company and industry trends.
    The allocation of funds to the principal asset classes is an important step in structuring an investment portfolio and together with stock selection is the single most important determinant of investment performance.
    Quantitative and technical research fine-tunes our investment timing decisions. Research supports our determination of the appropriate asset allocation; spread over cash, bonds, property and equity to suit the investment environment and the particular needs of the Client.
    Opportunistic approach from a micro point of view to specific value opportunities. Trading opportunities may arise from pricing anomalies between our researched value and market prices.
    Normally our Bond exposure is limited to State, quasi-State and selective corporate bonds. Property loan stocks and Property unit trust are used as proxies for property and at times fixed income investments.
    Cash/near cash balances are used from time to time as a protector against the vicissitudes of the investment markets and derivatives may also be considered.
    The majority of a portfolio’s equity exposure should be represented by quality, large capitalisation counters to enhance superior sustainable returns. Select and well researched mid-capitalisation shares are considered if they are in the ‘best growth’ category as are cyclical stocks with substantial turnaround potential.
    Generally, large capitalisation stocks follow international market sentiment closely, increasing the importance of accurate market timing. However, many of the mid cap growth companies and asset plays depend more on selection and marketability.
    International investments: The benefits of international diversification are compelling. Our offshore investment is facilitated through appropriate mutual fund investments.
    Compliance: general conformity of our investment philosophy and policy is ensured by an integrated compliance function that is responsible for monitoring that portfolios are regularly reviewed and comply with management policies, both in terms of portfolio construction and Client risk / return profiles.
    Where unit trusts are used to construct client portfolios, the same philosophy is adhered to, using available collective investment schemes.