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Why we're so keen on: CFP SDL UK Buffettology

20 August 2019

Chris Ryan of Apex CB Financial Planning on the fund (and manager) given the exclusive right to the ‘Buffettology’ name after getting the nod from the legendary investor…

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I first came across the CFP SDL UK Buffettology fund when I received an unexpected email inviting me to lunch in Bournemouth with the fund manager, Keith Ashworth-Lord. A small group attended – only five IFAs and three representatives from Castlefield, which markets the fund.

Keith was given the exclusive right to use the ‘Buffettology’ name by Berkshire Hathaway following a meeting with Warren Buffett several years ago. They each recognise the strengths and commonality of their investment approach, which is essentially to buy stocks at the right price and hold them for the long term.

At the meeting Keith said: “If I have found a great company why would I ever want to sell it?” He will only sell one of his holdings if there is a fundamental change within the company or its management.

His track record speaks for itself, with the fund residing comfortably in the top quartile over virtually every time period since it was launched in 2011.

Honesty

What I like about Keith is his honesty; it is rare to find a fund manager who is as comfortable talking about the occasions where he made a bad call as he is about his more frequent success stories.

Although this fund does not form a core part of our client proposition, because we outsource most of our fund selection, we have recommended it to several clients with more specialised investment objectives and the capacity to invest in high conviction equity funds. It is also a significant holding in my own pension.

UK Buffettology is certainly a niche fund, sitting in a similar space to Fundsmith Equity, but less well-known so it certainly raises eyebrows when first suggested to clients. However, I am satisfied with the quality of management and excellent returns.

Chris Ryan is managing director of Apex CB Financial Planning, based in Dorset, and has been in the business for 25 years.