Obviam

Obviam invests profitably for improving livelihoods in emerging and developing countries and thus for supporting inclusive growth. All investments are selected individually according to their expected contribution to poverty reduction and sustainable development, and their effects are systematically monitored and analysed. Obviam actively supports the adoption of international best practices on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.

Many foundations, family offices and other investors wish to have their investment programme tailored around specific mandate requirements with differing target allocation, risk-return preferences and social and environmental objectives. Obviam takes these aims into account when building an impact investment portfolio and offers flexible solutions with maximum economic efficiency. 

Obviam manages the investment portfolio of the Swiss Investment Fund for Emerging Markets (SIFEM) of the Swiss Confederation. Obviam also manages UBS's first impact investing fund and manages the impact investing portfolios of other institutional and professional investors.

“After we took the strategic decision to engage a part of our foundation’s capital in impact investing, we launched a detailed selection process. We then reached the conclusion that Obviam’s track record and its flexible investment solutions are the perfect fit for our foundation.” 

Sushant Sharma, Chief Investment Officer at Fondation Botnar

The Irish Collective Asset-management Vehicle (ICAV), is a relatively new type of investment fund structure, domiciled in Ireland. Obviam has structured its new ICAV as an umbrella fund, which allows sub-funds to be added to build bespoke client portfolios at any given time and without major administrative hurdles. This enables Obviam to offer flexible investment solutions to clients who intend to engage in impact investing.  

Once the structure is decided and the documentation complete, in principle, the addition of a sub-fund can be authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland within 24 hours. To enable this, certain requirements must be met: for instance, the vehicle is only open to qualified investors such as professional and institutional clients. In order to ensure the economic efficiency of the vehicle, a sub-fund should furthermore have a certain minimum size. This can be achieved through pooling of like-minded investors

The Swiss-based Fondation Botnar has entrusted Obviam with the mandate to invest USD 60 million of its endowment capital in impact investments. By supporting SMEs and rapidly growing companies in emerging and developing markets, the investment is helping to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people in growing urban environments.  

SMEs in emerging and developing countries are severely affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Curfews and the shutting down of economic activities have an immediate impact on them. The emerging and developing countries are also suffering from an unprecedented outflow of capital. In this environment, new long-term investments are not only of particular importance for the development, but also promise attractive long-term returns.

Please contact Philip if you would like to know more about our discretionary investment management product offering.