Thematics
Today’s investments are creating tomorrow’s world
Our thematic equity investments track disruptive secular growth themes—including safety, water, and AI & robotics—and are managed by a team with decades of thematic investing experience. The team taps markets that have the potential to grow at a rate superior to that of the broader global economy thanks to a range of long-term secular growth drivers. See how this can help you make the most of the innovation and trends shaping the future.

An experienced thematic equities team
Portfolio managers Arnaud Bisschop, Frédéric Dupraz, Simon Gottelier, Karen Kharmandarian and Nolan Hoffmeyer are the latest addition to the multi-affiliate family of leading investment managers at Natixis Investment Managers. The team have, on average, more than a decade of thematic investing experience.

Mohammed Amor

CEO

Learn more about our approach to thematic global equities
Mohammed Amor, CEO, introduces the team’s approach to global equity investing.

 

How would you describe the team’s approach to investing

Our initial consideration when approaching an investment is whether a business is a natural beneficiary of the ‘primary forces’ which we believe to be the perennial root causes of global disruption – namely demographics, innovation, globalization and scarcity. We believe that thematic focused portfolios are ideally positioned to be long-term beneficiaries of the secular growth drivers that arise from these far-reaching transformative shifts. So, we look to identify a broadly diversified group of mis-priced investment opportunities in the equities of companies that participate in their theme-specific market segments. These market segments have witnessed growth rates superior to that of the broader global economy due to the long-term secular growth themes which underpin them. Another important aspect is to focus on companies that also meet non-financial criteria relating to socially responsible management and ESG considerations.

Which market segments or themes do you focus on?

Our expertise is in three key areas: AI & robotics, safety and water.
Take water, for example. Our strategy seeks to identify investment opportunities in the companies participating in the provision of ’water infrastructure’, ‘pollution control’ and ’demand efficiency’ products and services.

Water is a basic need, not only for human life but also for economic development. It is a limited resource with growing demands placed upon its provision to sustain demographic and economic growth.

With the increasing need to treat or transport water where it is required, and collect it when used to avoid cross contamination, demand is increasing for the provision of technologies and services to deliver the required quantity and quality of water. The companies participating in this market therefore stand to benefit from its potential growth. We believe that the ever-growing water service industry represents a large, diversified, attractive and differentiated investment opportunity.

As for the automation and technological improvements brought by AI & robotics, they are changing in new and unforeseen ways how we live, interact and do business. This is occurring through the combination of significant advancements in performance capabilities and rapidly declining costs in key enabling technologies. And, as AI & robotics is a ‘general purpose’ technology that is growing exponentially rather than linearly, use cases are already many and growing – from opportunities in industrial automation and healthcare to office tasks and consumer services.

Likewise, the technology rapidly changing our world also creates new risks to the safety of individuals, communities, industries and nation states. As new threats emerge to this basic need, new steps will be taken to mitigate them. That creates a huge opportunity to invest in those market participants that will be on the forefront of the changes in safety.

AI & robotics, safety and water are all ‘themes’ that are becoming more prevalent in every aspect of our daily lives, with each one benefiting from long-term global trends in demographic, environmental, technological or lifestyle factors. We believe they each represent a potentially attractive and differentiated investment opportunity.

Why are you the best team to rise to these challenges?

In short, it’s because of the strong experience and track record of our portfolio managers and the industry-specific knowledge, network and connections that they bring to the table. Arnaud, Simon, Karen, Frédéric, Nolan, and Matthieu are well known and well respected in their specialist fields, with an average of over 10 years of thematic investing – in some cases at more than one previous organisation.

Prior to joining Natixis Investment Managers, these managers were part of an extremely well-known and successful thematic franchise. Over time, they have developed and launched a range of thematic funds and together have been involved in the management of more than $21 billion.

How does a thematic approach differ from traditional portfolio construction?

It is unconstrained, so it breaks out from the grid-like method of asset allocation. The search for new drivers of growth takes ‘thematics’ beyond geographical boundaries, style biases and market capitalisations, and it cuts across traditional sector classifications of equities. The strategic insight within the team allows us to identify emerging and potentially rewarding investment trends, while our analytical expertise means that we can essentially interpret the same information differently.

This differentiates thematic investing from traditional stock-picking. We are benchmark agnostic, breaking away from market-cap weighted indices – which give more weight to companies and industries that have won in the past – and focusing instead on the winners of tomorrow. Our investment horizon is therefore inherently long term.

Our thematic equity investments
We offer unconstrained and concentrated portfolios with a high active share relative to any major global equity index. Each one identifies companies with an attractive risk/return profile driven by long-term secular trends and meeting non-financial criteria relating to ESG issues.

Thematics Water Fund
Water - Water is essential to life. One of our most important natural resources, water is affected by global issues, from population growth, urbanization, and increasing regulation to pollution and climate change. Thematics Water Fund invests in companies participating in the provision of water utilities, pollution control and water infrastructure services.

Thematics AI and Robotics Fund
AI and Robotics - Artificial intelligence and robotics are becoming more and more ingrained in every aspect of modern life. Significant advancements are boosting performance and lowering costs across a variety of sectors of the economy – and dramatically shifting the way we do business, live, and interact. Thematics AI and Robotics Fund invests in companies that focus on the provision of products and services powered by AI and/or Robotics.

Thematics Safety Fund
Safety - Every-day activities – from travel and online shopping to energy production and networking – are secured by forces that are practically invisible. These intangible resources underpin the framework of human safety in our global world today. Thematics Safety Fund invests in companies that offers products and services for the physical and digital protection of individuals, business and government.

Thematics Subscription Economy Fund
Subscription Economy - While some companies and industries were born as subscription services, others are increasingly using subscriptions to monetise their services or products – from video and music streaming to fitness, video games and retail. Shifting consumer preferences, technological innovation and increasing sustainability concerns mean the subscription economy is poised for accelerating future growth. Thematics Subscription Economy Fund invests in companies that provide products or services on a subscription basis.

Thematics Meta Fund
META - We believe that each of our funds invests in the themes that are driving the future humanity, society, and the planet. To that end, Thematics Meta Fund is comprised of the strategies within our thematic franchise – offering broad exposure to these critical themes in a single place. It invests directly in equity of companies and is not a fund of funds.




Related Articles

Thematics Insights: Why Are Subscriptions So Attractive?

Both consumers and businesses are subscribing more and more to products and services. This Insight shines the light on some of the long term factors that are driving the broad adoption of subscription based models across a nice mix of industries.

  • May 5, 2020
Watch

Intelligence Inside

Karen Kharmandarian, co-manager for the Thematics AI & Robotics strategy, explains why AI and robotics will continue to influence all aspects of our lives.

  • March 25, 2020
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Safety in Numbers

Frederic Dupraz, lead manager of the Thematics Safety strategy, explains why the response to emerging threats to our safety create investment opportunities.

  • March 24, 2020
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Subscription Economy: The Future of Consumption

With the right supporting demographic, technological and sustainability drivers in place, the subscription economy is poised to see further accelerating growth

  • February 12, 2020

Q&A with Simon Gottelier – Future of portfolios

Simon Gottelier talks about Thematics Asset Management’s proposition and how they integrate ESG into the mix.

  • November 29, 2019
Watch

Thematics – A True Source of Diversification?

In the future, will everyone be investing in megatrends? And who benefits from shifts in demographic, innovation, globalisation and scarcity?

  • September 11, 2019

Manager Point of View: Clear opportunities

Simon Gottelier, co-manager for the Thematics Water strategy, explores how some companies are addressing global imbalances in water supply and demand.

  • August 9, 2019





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