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NZ launch of global disruptive innovation fund


New Zealand investors can now access arguably the world’s most exciting investment fund, uniquely comprising global products and services characterised by world-changing disruptive innovation.

Nikko AM NZ will today formally announce the launch of the Nikko AM ARK Global Disruptive Innovation Fund, through its established global partnership model with US-based ARK Invest. This partnership will now allow New Zealanders to invest into a PIE fund focussed solely on the leaders, enablers and beneficiaries of the disruptive innovations that are changing the way the world works. These include products and services within the fields of robotics, automation, energy storage, genomic sequencing, artificial intelligence and next generation internet technologies.

Talking ahead of Nikko AM NZ’s annual FOREWORD investor insights summit in Wellington today, NZ managing director George Carter says that he’s delighted to now be able to bring the ARK Invest strategies and capabilities to New Zealand.

“Our world is fuelled by technological change. Advances in science and technology continue to happen at pace, and new innovations are being thought of everyday. As a global asset management firm, we believe disruptive innovation is a key component to investing in the future, and we aim to provide solutions that allow New Zealanders to access these opportunities.”

ARK Invest defines disruptive innovation as ‘the introduction of a technologically enabled new product or service that permanently changes an industry landscape by creating simplicity and accessibility while driving down costs’. Focused solely on disruptive innovation, it uses an open research platform that converges inputs from thought leaders, social media interactions and crowd-sourced insights to ideate and then size and direct the investment opportunity.

ARK CEO and Chief Investment Officer Cathie Wood, who is here in New Zealand to launch the fund at FOREWORD, says innovation typically needs time and maturity before gaining mass market adoption, which is why it doesn’t necessarily fit with traditional investment models.

“The ARK Fund enables investors to access early-stage and emerging companies through listed global equity markets. We believe this offers long-term growth without the high costs and illiquidity typically associated with similar investments accessed through venture capital funds,” says Wood.

“Over time, innovation will displace industry incumbents, increase efficiencies, and gain majority market share. More importantly, disruptive innovation impacts and concerns all of our lives and changes the way the world works.”

For New Zealand investors, access to the fund will be available directly through Nikko AM’s direct-to-consumer robo-advice platform, GoalsGetter. However, while the opportunity to be an invested player in the world’s future is undoubtedly an exciting one, George Carter cautions that it is not necessarily a suitable option for everyone.

“By working closely with ARK and leveraging its unique investment model, we can now give clients exposure to the growth that accompanies disruptive innovation, which is continuing to transform our world at an accelerated rate. But with innovation comes the risk of constant and sometimes extreme ups and downs, therefore this fund is intended for long term investors with a high risk tolerance who are seeking diversification from more traditional portfolios.”

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