The Nordic asset management boutique Evli has recently achieved two important recognitions for the quality of its management style and products. On the one hand, the highest Morningstar rating (5 stars) for its Evli Short Corporate Bond fund, and on the other, recognition as “Best Institutional Asset Manager” in Finland.
Evli manages AUM of €15 Bn at the end of Q1 2021. In the Spanish market, it distributes funds for institutional clients through Selinca AV, specifically short-duration corporate fixed income, Nordic, European and global equities, and emerging equities.
Evli Short Corporate Bond
The Evli Short Corporate Bond fund (ISIN code FI4000233242, FI0008800511) recently achieved Morningstar’s highest rating – 5 stars – in the Euro Short-Term Corporate Bond Fixed Income category.
The fund invests in short-term European corporate bonds and provides access to the Nordic markets. With an excellent risk adjusted return, the fund has ranked in Morningstar´s top quartile for 1-, 3-, 5- and 10-year returns in its category. According to Morningstar data, year-to-date net return is 1.41% (clean class, June 17), outperforming comparable funds by 121 bps, and outperformingthe the BBgBarc Euro Agg Corp 1-3 Years idex by 111 bps, the benchmark used by Mornigstar to assess the relative return of this fund. The portfolio duration at the end of May was 1.98 years and it has AUM of EUR 1,544 million.
The fund managers select debt issues of companies with attractive valuations, positive free cash flow, low leverage and growing debt coverage. For this universe of companies, they carry out a strict fundamental analysis: financial statements, economic and sector outlook, quality of managers, issuance conditions, ESG focus. The results are compared with the figures of their competitors, especially taking into account leverage levels.
The result is a diversified portfolio, consisting of around 150 issues from 90-100 companies, multi-sector, and with a limit of 25% in a single sector. The portfolio has a maximum modified duration (security price sensitivity to interest rate changes) of 2.5.
The portfolio’s average rating is BBB- and the fund can include up to 40% of the total in issues of companies with no credit rating, companies that do not require an external agency to rate their debt responsiveness, due to the strength of their balance sheet and the quality and soundness of their business models. In addition, 90% of the portfolio may be invested in bonds with maturities up to 5 years, and the remaining 10% in bonds with maturities up to 8 years.
Best Finnish Asset Manager for Institutional Investors
Meanwhile, Nordic management boutique Evli has once again been ranked as the “best institutional asset manager” in Finland, according to KANTAR SIFO Prospera’s annual “External Asset Management Finland 2021” survey of the country’s leading institutional investors.
The survey focuses exclusively on the perception of the quality level of the largest Finnish institutional investors. A total of 14 of the country’s leading institutional investors rate and score 13 management quality criteria. The respondents include insurance companies, pension funds, foundations, municipalities, trade unions and universities.
Evli has ranked first in this survey for five consecutive years (2015, 2016, 2017, 2017, 2018, 2019) and second in 2020. The Nordic management boutique is also the most used institutional asset manager in Finland for the fifth year in a row: more than 66% of respondents use the company’s asset management services.
With a final score of 4.3 on a scale of 1 to 5, respondents primarily rate Evli’s differential quality in portfolio management services (4.23), product quality (4.00), expertise in sustainable investing (3.98) and competence in the commercial area (4.27).