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Finance & Banking | Global Arab Network
S&P assigns A rating to Oman-based Vision Emerging GCC Fund
Global Arab Network - - Mohamed Tamer
Muscat_oman_stock_exchange-
Standard & Poor’s Fund Services announced today that it has assigned an A (New) fund management rating to the Vision Emerging GCC Fund, an Oman domiciled open-ended investment fund.

Launched in May 2005, the fund is the first fund from Vision Investment Services Co to be awarded an S&P Fund Services rating.  The rating recognises the approach is sensible and consistently applied and both manager and fund
advisor are experienced.

The fund aims to generate strong absolute returns.  The approach blends top-down and bottom-up in what is a
pragmatically managed portfolio of 55-60 names built with no consideration for the most commonly used benchmarks.

The fund is run by Rajesh Venkiteswaran who has 15 years' experience and joined the group in the summer of 2008. Venkiteswaran has managed portfolios for 14 years across a variety of investment strategies.  He is supported by Shabbir Kagalwala covering Saudi Arabia and Qatar, and Abbas Muselmi, responsible for Oman and the smaller markets within the GCC region, who both have three years' experience.

“While Venkiteswaran has only been in place for just over a year, we are reassured to see that Mustafa Ahmed Jaffer who has over 12 years' experience, continues to be the fund advisor.  He is not involved in the day-to-day management of the fund but has provided strategic/thematic input since launch that has been helpful in driving the research effort. Venkiteswaran is himself experienced and has managed money across a number of cycles and strategies,” said Roberto Demartini, lead analyst at Standard & Poor’s Fund Services.

In terms of performance, since being taken over by Venkiteswaran to the end of June 2009, the fund has returned -26.9% compared to -28.2% of the sector median and -37.7% for the S&P/IFCI GCC index.  “Since October 2008, the fund has outpaced most commonly used benchmarks and, to the end of June 2009, fares well against peers,” said Demartini.

“Vision is an independent asset manager of repute having a highly qualified team with a diverse industry background that provides a strong fundamental Research platform for their investment decisions on one side, and sound Risk Management capabilities across functions & processes on the other.  We are delighted to be awarded an A fund management rating by S&P Fund Services,” said Mr. Ali Mohammed Juma, Chief Executive Officer, Vision Investment Services Co.

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