Product review: Polar Capital Global Biotechnology fund

For those wanting to invest in a specialised area of the scientific market, Polar Capital has launched a global biotechnology fund.

Its aim is to achieve long-term capital growth through investing in a diversified global portfolio of biotechnology companies. It will contain between 40 and 60 investments and its performance will be benchmarked against the Nasdaq Biotechnology index.

Potential investment targets for Polar Capital include companies where it believes the successful development of a drug, device or diagnostic has the potential to comprehensively change the treatment of a disease.

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It will be managed by David Pinniger, a recent hire to Polar Capital’s specialist healthcare investment team.

The fund has an AMC of 1.5 per cent and there is no minimum investment for retail investors. It is available in sterling, US dollar and euro-denominated share classes.


The overall signs are good for this sector: this fund has the potential to be a very exciting prospect for investors.

Although no investment is a dead cert, it is clear that healthcare- and biotechnology-oriented funds are performing extremely well at the moment. Their figures are riding high on performance charts across varying timescales over the past five years. At the time of writing, the top five funds in the Specialist sector are all in this area, with the best-performing fund a specific biotechnology fund. All healthcare and biotechnology funds appear in the top 15 performers ranked by return on an initial £1,000 investment over the past year, all returning well over the sector average.

The second, third and fourth best-performing funds in the sector are the various denominations of the Polar Capital healthcare fund. Although this is the firm’s first specific biotechnology fund, it is well placed for it.

The trust has had great performance, delivering a 44 per cent return over the past year.

This all bodes well for Polar Capital’s new venture, which – if it chooses the right investments – could have a similar success story in biotechnology to what the firm has already achieved in healthcare.