It always feels good to beat the market. Amid a severe worldwide IPO drought, showing a decrease of -32% of the global amount raised, we managed to make 2016 the best year of our Fund since its inception with a Total Return on Investment of +47.53%.
The number of IPOs we participated in reached an all-time high of 66, compared to 54 in 2015 and 51 in 2014. Moreover, the average return by IPO increased to +13.03%, when it was +10.86% in 2015 and 6.59% in 2014.
This means not only did we expand our sourcing of IPO allocations, but we also improved our selection process of the deals.
In a very compartmented IPO world, our geographical strategy of diversification already made us different from the crowd of IPO players, and our activity in Japan makes our Fund especially unique. With 4 Japanese IPOs in 2014 and 7 in 2015, we catapulted to 14 deals in Tokyo in 2016. This represented 21% of our total deals. Hong Kong and Seoul brought us a total of 22 Asian IPOs, 30.3% of the total, also an all-time high.
But still, the US market remains our primary market constituting almost 61% of the total IPOs we invested in, and 64% of the total of sourced allocations last year. The stock market turmoil in the first quarter, the Brexit vote in the second, and the distraction of the US presidential election in the last half of 2016 did not create the optimal conditions for a great US IPO year. Indeed, US IPO proceeds fell to the lowest level since 2003. In this context, our participation in 40 US IPOs looks like an extraordinary achievement.
Looking forward to 2017, we will avoid getting sidetracked by the rumors of the long-awaited return of tech IPOs, the surge of Biotech, or the comeback of Oil & Gas. Instead, we will continue to improve our research resources, expand our network of allocation sourcing, and invest in overlooked emerging countries’ markets.
On behalf of the Directors of the Fund, the Investment Managers, and the administrative and trading teams, we wish you a happy and prosperous new year.