The Standard South Africa equity fund will be managed by Richard Middleton and will invest exclusively in South Africa whilst the Standard Africa equity fund, managed by John Mackie, will invest in up to 20 African markets across the continent excluding South Africa.
The funds will be launched in early August 2007 and will target multi-managers, funds of funds, hedge funds, other institutional investors and high net worth investors.
STANLIB, the Johannesburg-based asset management operation of the Standard Bank of South Africa, believes it is important to separate investing in South Africa from other African countries as it represents over 70 per cent of Africa’s entire stock market capitalisation.
Standard Bank of South Africa global investment marketing director Dylan Evans says: “International investors have traditionally been wary of investing in Africa outside of South Africa and for the most part the continent’s equity markets remain almost exclusively owned by domestic institutions and a few private investors. However, attitudes are clearly changing as investors continue to seek out new markets to invest in and potentially achieve high returns.
“Over the last 10 years the foundations for Africa’s future growth have been laid. Most African nations are now stable, most have reduced their debt to manageable proportions or in many cases, eliminated it entirely and most have seen their inflation and interest rates fall to levels which are in line with emerging markets in general.”