[Editor’s note: In September 2016, Chris Cuffe wrote to our readers with an update on the Third Link Growth Fund (the Fund). He said in part:
“I started Third Link in 2008 with a unique idea. What if I established a fund where all the fees received for managing the investments, net of some tiny expenses, were donated to charities. After a long career in wealth management, I felt I had an ability to select good fund managers who could outperform over time. If I could convince the managers and administrators to provide their services for free for a worthy cause, everyone could win.”
At the time, the Fund had recently exceeded $100 million, and Chris recommitted to close the fund to new investors when it reached $150 million. Since September 2016 there has been significant inflows to the Fund, to the great benefit of the many charities the Fund supports. Chris has this week issued a Media Release announcing that the Fund has almost reached this soft close target, and he has set a firm closure date. New investors will not be accepted after this date].
Third Link Growth Fund will be closed to new investors at the end of August 2017.
Launched in May 2008, the Fund invests in Australian equities via third party professional investment managers. Management fees are donated to charity.
Since its inception the Fund has donated more than $6.5 million to charity, predominantly those helping to support children and young people. It presently donates over $150,000 per month. This amount is expected to continue growing in future even with the Fund closed to new investors.
The Fund takes a portfolio approach to charitable giving, forging long-term partnerships with quality organisations such as Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME), National Centre for Childhood Grief, The Song Room, batyr, Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal, Dismantle, SHINE for Kids, BackTrack, Mirabel Foundation, Raise Foundation and Children’s Ground.
Chris Cuffe said, “I am extraordinarily proud of Third Link and the generosity of its pro bono fund managers and services providers that have made it possible. It was always my intention to close the Fund to new investors once it reached $150 million, and having exceeded $144 million at the end of June 2017, I have decided it is appropriate to close the Fund to new investors at the end of August 2017.”
The Fund commenced as a multi sector growth fund but, following investor feedback, altered its mandate in February 2012 when it became a purely Australian equities fund.
In the more than five and a half years since it has been an Australian equities fund, Third Link Growth Fund has produced a compound return of 14.0% per annum after fees, outperforming the S&P/ASX300 Accumulation Index by 3.1% per annum. This has demonstrated the success of its active management approach. Since inception over nine years ago, the Fund has delivered a compound return of 9.5% per annum after fees, despite the impact of the global financial crisis. During this same period, the bank bill rate was 3.6% per annum and the Australian share market returned 4.6% per annum.
Chris Cuffe is Founder and pro bono Portfolio Manager of Third Link Growth Fund.
The pro bono fund managers used in Third Link Growth Fund are Aberdeen Standard Investments (formerly Aberdeen Asset Management), Bennelong Australian Equity Partners, Colonial First State Global Asset Management, Cooper Investors, Greencape Capital, Harness Asset Management, JBWere Wealth Management, L1 Capital, Lazard Asset Management Pacific Co, Lennox Capital Partners, Montgomery Investment Management, Ophir Asset Management, Paradice Investment Management, and Pengana Capital.
The pro bono service providers to Third Link Growth Fund include Bennelong Funds Management (Responsible Entity), RBC Investor Services Trust (custodian and administrator), Minter Ellison (legal work), Deloitte (auditors and tax advisers to the Fund), Ernst & Young (auditors of the Manager) and Nexia Australia (tax advisers to the Manager).
If you would like to consider whether to invest in the Fund, please see the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and the Additional Information to the PDS here. The information above is general information only. It does not constitute financial, tax or legal advice or an offer or solicitation to subscribe for units in the Fund. There can be no assurance that the Fund will continue to achieve its targeted rate of return and no guarantee against loss resulting from an investment in the Fund.