Philosophy and Process
Discipline is the foundation upon which all success is built.
At Vestcap, we have been refining our process over the last 30 years. Rather than focusing on what has worked in the past or how asset classes are “supposed” to behave, we take a First Principles approach to investment management and purchase securities with the best risk-reward characteristics that are aligned with client outcomes.
Discipline is at the core of how we manage portfolios at Vestcap. It means staying true to our beliefs even in the face of adversity. Having the discipline to walk away from poorly performing securities, despite our convictions, is equally as important as systematically taking profits in securities that continue to perform. Knowing when to allocate, when to take profits, when to rotate sectors, or how much to have invested are disciplines that only experience can provide and is perhaps our strongest competitive advantage.
First principles thinking means breaking down markets to their undeniable basic truths that cannot be deduced down any further. This allows us to avoid many of the behavioural biases asset managers often fall victim to. An example could be a reminder that all markets everywhere are a construct of humans. Robots and algorithms, despite their proliferation within securities markets, do not have any natural incentive to participate in them any more than bears or beavers do.
While pricing patterns and technical analysis can offer invaluable insight, we only buy securities with strong economic fundamentals. Examples of strong fundamentals could include a company growing market share in a growing industry, while poor fundamentals could be a company with consistent revenue declines in a highly competitive industry.
Since our inception in 1988, Vestcap has placed its trust in effective managers with a clearly stated vision and track record of execution. Whether a geologist uncovering new materials in unexpected places or the leader of a small cap industrial company trying to pivot to an increasingly regionalized economy, leadership, vision, and execution more often than not will lead to achieving our investment objectives.
Since the great recession of 2008, “quality” has been an increasingly popular term used in finance to describe businesses that should be able to thrive in any macroeconomic environment. This has been a guiding principle at Vestcap for over 30 years and we’re glad to see the rest of the industry catching up with us. Companies that are able to generate consistent free cash flow against little to no debt.
High Conviction Portfolios
At Vestcap, we focus on exceeding client expectations. Our portfolios are constructed around a limited number of holdings, each chosen for their long-term investment attributes, not their weight in an index. We generally take a longer investment horizon than most managers today.