BlackRock launches onshore version of Asian Dragon

BlackRock has launched an onshore version of its $720.8m (£470.2m) Asian Dragon fund, Investment Adviser can reveal.

The fund is to be run by Andrew Swan, head of the company’s Asian Fundamental Equities team, and it marks the first time BlackRock has launched a UK-based Asian equity fund.

The fund’s minimum investment is £500 and it has a 0.75 per cent share class available for platform investments.

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Mr Swan will invest “beyond large company stocks”, BlackRock said, including mid cap and off-benchmark holdings, and will typically hold between 50 and 80 companies in the portfolio.

Mr Swan said: “Asian equity valuations are below their long term averages making for an attractive entry point for long term investors. And fundamentally, the profound changes taking place in consumption, income growth and demographics are reshaping the investment landscape in Asia.”

The BlackRock Global Funds Asian Dragon fund has underperformed its MSCI AC Asia Pacific ex Japan index benchmark in the five-year period to June 25 according to FE Analytics, gaining 22.4 per cent compared with the index’s 39 per cent gain.

However, since Mr Swan took charge of the fund in August 2011 the performance has improved. Since he completed the restructure of the fund in October 2011 the Asian Dragon fund gained 24 per cent, outperforming its benchmark’s 17 per cent return, and ranking in the second quartile of the IMA Asia Pacific ex Japan sector.