ARGON wins in 2016
The year 2016 was a great one for Argon Asset Management, with a string of awards for the company and its management.
The company was awarded the prize for the best asset management brand in South Africa by Global Brands Magazine. The company’s CEO, Mothobi Seseli, was also named best asset management CEO in South Africa.
And it was named best asset management company 2016 by IFM and Global Business Outlook.
Since launching operations in April 2005, Argon has focused on providing investment management services for institutional investors. It operates from offices in Cape Town and Johannesburg.
Each of Argon’s investment portfolios has been in the top quartile for over three years locally. Internationally it has affiliated with Schroders Asset Investment Management through an exclusive institutional investment partnership, offering specific benchmark-beating products.
“Portfolio construction is key to our investment decisions; combining expected returns with certainty of those outcomes ensures a high probability of beating the benchmark,” says Manas Bapela, chief investment officer at Argon Asset Management. “We focus on diversified, small, active positions that give consistent incremental alpha.”
Bapela notes positive movements in the South African market, particularly in natural resources. South Africa is benefiting from the reflation trade like the rest of the world, as commodity prices come off their lows and earnings and growth improve. As such, resources are offering superior, longterm value.
He emphasises the importance of high-quality research in making the best investment decisions.
“We focus primarily on our own research and portfolios rather than market research,” he says. “We look at what sectors are the best performing in the short term and the reasons behind that. Resources are performing well at present owing to the global reflation trade. “Our business is to assess the valuation of a company relative to its underlying assets and make the most optimal decision for our investors. Not to operationally run a company, but to use our votes to ensure the best managers are in place to actually run the business,” he says. Private equity or venture capital investors, however, are in a different position and are likely to be more involved in the running of companies.
Manas Bapela, chief investment officer at Argon Asset Management