CBR Investment CEO Daniel Kienle tells Citywire Switzerland what makes his firm stand out from the crowd, and why a drive through the countryside is the best way to unwind in Balzers
Why are you based in Balzers?
Since the launch of our first funds in 2004, we have enjoyed a long-standing, reliable partnership with Neue Bank and IFM Independent Fund Management in Vaduz. This led to our decision to start CBR Investment in Balzers in 2011, leaving Zurich. Liechtenstein is an EEA member, which makes the distribution of our funds to the EU easier. CBR has been an independent asset manager since 1997.
What is the biggest challenge being based in Balzers?
You have to allow approximately two hours for the journey to or from the airport in Zurich. This means you need to allow enough time for events and customer meetings.
Which sectors are you avoiding?
We are currently neutrally weighted. Most of our smaller clients are invested in our actively managed funds. These include an equity fund, CBR Strategy Fund – Optimum Classic; a bond fund, CBR Strategy Fund – Return Classic; an equity fund that invests in Vietnamese equities, Lumen Vietnam fund; and a fund that invests primarily in stocks and participation securities from Asia, the Lumen Value Asia fund. We have different currency tranches within these four funds for different base currency preferences.
What is your stance at the moment: bullish or bearish?
After the large rise in the stock markets, we expect a certain consolidation in the second half of the year, which could be used to build up new positions.
What is the number-one concern for your clients right now?
The biggest concerns of our customers are the future development of European policy, for example the consequences of Brexit, Italian elections and Trump’s impeachment investigation.
What distinguishes your firm from the competition?
Thanks to many years of experience and reliable cooperation with business partners we are able to react quickly to changes and emerging trends.
One example of the rapid implementation of an investment idea was the launch of our Lumen Vietnam fund five years ago, when there were not many investment opportunities in the country. Another milestone was the decision to convert our funds into the Ucits format four years ago.
What are your top allocation picks?
For our advisory mandates with a balanced portfolio we recommend investing in blue chips with a sustainable dividend policy. This includes names such as Fresenius Medical Care, Swisscom and BASF.
If you were in Balzers on a business trip for 24 hours, what would you do?
Since Balzers is a very small place, I would advise driving through the countryside to discover its many beautiful locations.
In Vaduz I would recommend the Citytrain, which allows you to see many stunning sites within half an hour.
CBR Investment fact file:
Date opened: 1997 CBR Privatinvest, 2011 CBR Investment
In-house funds launch date: 2004
Assets under management: CHF200 million plus assets from private customers
Size of team: seven
Membership: Verein Unabhängiger Vermögensverwalter in Liechtenstein (VuVL)
This article originally appeared in the June 2017 edition of Citywire Switzerland magazine.