Bheki Mkhize, CEO of FNB Wealth and Investments
FNB Horizon Funds exceed their benchmarks over most periods
It’s been almost five years since the launch of the Horizon Series Unit Trusts, which FNB now offers as part of its comprehensive investment solutions aimed at meeting the needs of all South Africans. In 2018, FNB restructured the Horizon Series investment offering, with all five funds in the range now consistently performing very well in absolute terms, against their respective benchmarks, and relative to their peer groups of comparable funds over most periods.
The FNB Horizons unit trusts are seeing close to 2000 new accounts a month through a combination of lump sum investors and monthly recurring debit orders (minimum R300 per month). Total assets under management in the Horizon series funds now sits at R4.5 billion.
The Horizons Series unit trust offering was launched as part of FNB’s drive to assist clients on their money management journey. Investing whether for retirement or for specific goals such as kids’ education should form a key part a client’s financial portfolio. FNB has further made it easy for clients to invest directly into these unit trusts on its digital platforms through an easy-to-use robo tool or through a financial advisor.
The robo tool also assists clients who need help based on their investment goals and needs, by recommending the most appropriate product. Clients are able to view their goals and investments throughout their investment term, through FNB online or on the FNB app, to ensure they remain on track to achieve their goal.
According to Bheki Mkhize, CEO of FNB Wealth and Investments, “FNB clients have appreciated being able to view their investments on FNB digital platforms alongside their banking and lending. This has meant they have been able to watch their Horizon unit trusts grow without needing to wait for a quarterly statement from their financial services provider.”
“The FNB Horizon Series was designed to demystify and simplify investment to make it accessible to more South Africans,” Mkhize explains, “and we have always recognised that the best way to achieve this is to make it easy for our investors to speak to us and ensure that we are open to acting on the feedback they provide wherever appropriate.”
“The funds were simplified in 2018, on the back of feedback from investors, to make them easier to understand and select, while still providing an effective blend of active and passive (ETFs) investments, local and offshore exposure, internal and external active asset managers as well as diversification across various asset classes.”
This open communication philosophy was of particular importance in terms of helping investors in making or avoiding ill-informed decisions about their investments especially during the economic panic caused by Covid-19.
“During tumultuous market times, patience, a level head, and staying focused on your long-term investment horizons are more important than ever,” he explains, “which is why we were committed to keeping the lines of communication open with our investors during the height of the pandemic, offering them the assurance that they needn’t make rash short-term decisions about their investments.”
Mkhize is confident that the solid performance delivered by the FNB Horizon Series funds will continue into the future. An opinion that is informed by the strong performance delivered by the FNB Multi Manager funds over the past decade, which are managed by the same investment management teams.
“The multi-manager fund returns achieved by these managers over the past decade also puts them consistently in the top quartile, and well above their respective benchmarks, over the longer term,” he says, “and if this outperformance is any indicator of their proficiency – which we believe it most definitely is – investors in the FNB Horizon Series can look forward to continuing competitive investment growth in the coming years.”