Company Profiles

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Church House Puts Faith In Tight Risk Controls To Deliver The Goods

Tom Burroughes, Group Editor, London, 20 August 2013

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It doesn't have the brand recognition of a Fidelity or BlackRock but UK boutique Church House Investment Management is happily delivering solid risk-adjusted returns.

Your correspondent will be the first to admit that when an
invitation was extended to interview managers at a firm called Church House Investment Management, I could not quite place the business.

But while it may not have the sort of brand recognition of a
Fidelity, BlackRock or Threadneedle, Church House is happily getting on with the job of
running money for institutions and individuals in a risk-controlled way that
merits plenty of attention. The business house oversees £500 million ($782
million) of assets under management. One of its portfolios, for example, called
the Deep Value fund, delivered total returns of a very respectable 23 per cent
last year – beating the FTSE All Share Total Return Index (17.9 per cent). Church
House runs personal portfolios and specialist mandates for clients such as
family offices and private banks, as well as pension schemes. Collective investment schemes include Managed
Growth, Equity Income, Corporate Bond, Absolute Return and, as previously
mentioned, Deep Value.

Tracing
its roots back to the 19th Century to a firm of West Country
solicitors, with offices near a church – hence the name - Church
House Investment Management was set up in 1999. It was the
asset management arm of Church House
Trust, a boutique private bank that was sold to Sir Richard Branson in 2010
when the buccaneering tycoon founded his own “Virgin” private banking business. The
remaining asset management business was bought out by its management. It is now owned by directors, employees and the Cayzer family.

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