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CWM at 10: five readers' best investments of the decade

Readers pick their best investment of the decade long bull market

Rupert Caldecott

RM Caldecott & Partners

Renishaw

‘My best investment, which is unusual because I don’t usually invest in individual equities, has been a company called Renishaw [a supplier of products and services in applications from jet engine manufacturing to brain surgery] which I bought almost 10 years ago.

‘It seems like an extraordinary example of a smaller company, although it’s not small anymore. If you follow the story until very recently it has gone from strength to strength.

‘It’s run by two people who were ex-Rolls-Royce engineers and it was just such a fantastic story. I bought it for around £10 and now it’s a little off its best, but it’s around £46 and was over £50 at one stage.

‘It has moments, as you might expect, of volatility but they apply for enormous numbers of patents and it has achieved scale.'

Over 10 years to 25 January, Renishaw share price is up 1,134%.

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Rupert Caldecott

RM Caldecott & Partners

Renishaw

‘My best investment, which is unusual because I don’t usually invest in individual equities, has been a company called Renishaw [a supplier of products and services in applications from jet engine manufacturing to brain surgery] which I bought almost 10 years ago.

‘It seems like an extraordinary example of a smaller company, although it’s not small anymore. If you follow the story until very recently it has gone from strength to strength.

‘It’s run by two people who were ex-Rolls-Royce engineers and it was just such a fantastic story. I bought it for around £10 and now it’s a little off its best, but it’s around £46 and was over £50 at one stage.

‘It has moments, as you might expect, of volatility but they apply for enormous numbers of patents and it has achieved scale.'

Over 10 years to 25 January, Renishaw share price is up 1,134%.

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Richard Philbin

Wellian Investment Solutions

Tetragon Financial trust

‘An interesting defensive investment I really like is an investment trust called Tetragon. It is a boutique fund management business, with a hedge fund, property fund and CLO [collateralised loan obligation] business.

‘It’s well priced, which might scare people away, but it pays a very healthy dividend on a quarterly basis.

‘It’s on about a 40% discount to its net asset value, so you have got some downside protection. It is very well run, and it is giving you somewhere between 8% and 10% compound year in and year out.

‘The trust is about £1 billion in terms of market cap. It’s a big investment trust but it’s not well liked by the investing public because it’s got a very unusual share voting facility, where a few of the senior corporate management own the voting rights and that does scare people away.’

Over the past 10 years, Tetragon Financial is up 258% on a NAV basis compared to the sector’s 153% total return.

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Vince Hopkins

BRI Wealth

Baillie Gifford American fund

‘Baillie Gifford in the US has been terrific and has done a great job over that period, as they’ve leaned more towards technology and the Faangs.

‘They have done a good job, and we are very happy to support them, even up until November/December last year, when markets got hit badly. We are still very happy to sit tight.

‘We are very happy to maintain a basket approach with Baillie Gifford, and also the Artemis US Smaller Companies and the Miton US funds.’

The Baillie Gifford American fund has returned 341.6% to investors over the past 10 years to 31 December. Over the same period, its peers on average returned 219.8%.

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Hilary Coghill

City Asset Management

Ennismore European Smaller Companies fund

‘It is a slightly off-the-wall investment. What attracts me to it is that they don’t use broker research – they do all the research, and it is a very small team. They have kept the fund small, and they are not inclined to open it up to new investors, because they believe that the strategy only works with a relatively small fund.

‘When they short, they short individual stocks and not indices. It is never going to hit the peak, but I think one of my clients is up over 1,000% since she first invested.'

Over the past 10 years to the end of December, the Ennismore European Smaller Companies fund has returned a staggering 167.3% in a sector where the average return was 9.3%.

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Edward Strange

Brewin Dolphin

Fever-Tree

‘For G&T lovers and investors alike, Fever-Tree has become a very well-known brand. The tonic maker, which started out in 2004 and listed in 2014, has provided IPO [initial public offering] investors with a share price return of 1,500% to its current price of £26.

‘Not only has the company had impeccable timing with the rise in fashion of G&T in the UK, but their ability to build a premium and desirable brand has been a large contributor to the company’s success.

‘Fever-Tree has managed to succeed with a relatively lean approach, outsourcing most of their operations and employing around 55 members of staff, which leads to efficient capital use, shown from a Roce [return on capital employed] of 41%, strong growth in cash flow generation and low leverage.’

Since Fever-Tree listed in 2014, the stock has enjoyed a momentous climb of 1,505%.

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