Matthew Lamb, head of UK mutual funds at GAM, said that the firm has waited before launching GAM Star Trading, waiting over the past 18 months or so for the Ucits III absolute return universe to grow to a size that made a fund of such funds approach viable.
It is a strategic mirror of GAM Trading II, the firm’s existing offshore fund of hedge funds that it has run since 1997, investing entirely in external funds. It focuses on low correlation across the asset classes and has consistently returned Libor +1% across the mid 2000 market highs, when Libor was 4% or 5% as well as when Libor fell closer to 0%.
It follows the more liquid discretionary macro (around 70% to 80% of the total) and managed futures strategies rather than any equity long/short or arbitrage plays.
As opposed to the external focus of GAM Trading II, GAM Star Trading is a Dublin-domiciled fund that will be able to invest in a maximum of 30% in GAM’s own single manager Ucits III funds. At launch it held one in-house fund, as a 10% position.
Lamb confirmed that the new offering will make a 1.6% annual management charge but it will not charge a separate performance fee. However, it will honour any performance fee charged by the underlying funds, including any own in-house funds.
Initially, the 1.6% is a retail charge with the possibility of a future institutional class being launched