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Rogoff: I'll accept proxy Apple-Samsung battles but no more

by Sarah Miloudi on Dec 17, 2012 at 12:22

Rogoff: I'll accept proxy Apple-Samsung battles but no more

Polar Capital technology star Ben Rogoff has said he is willing to fund 'proxy' battles between Apple and Samsung but has expressed caution if the giants go head to head.

Rogoff (pictured) holds both names in his popular Polar Capital Technology Trust, which he has decided to make less index aware in a style more akin to his open-ended fund, Polar Capital Global Technology.

While keeping a close eye on the broader tech sector, which has suffered in recent months and seen the Dow Jones World Technology Index shed 5.4% over the last half year, Rogoff is also gauging the tension between Apple and Samsung which earlier this month faced a court showdown over patents.

'We have [seen] proxy battles and I will sponsor those,' A-rated Rogoff told Wealth Manager, but added both stocks risked losing value if tensions escalate.

Between them, Rogoff pointed out Apple and Samsung have virtually tied up some markets, warranting his position in both.

In recent months, however, the raft of product launches seen more widely  in the technology space has weighed ont he sector and as a result has delayed consumer spending.

'At the consumer level we suspect that a slew of recent product launches (iPhone 5, Google, Nexus 7, iPad Mini, Windows Surface, Amazon Kindle Fire HD) may have elongated purchase decisions,' the manager said.

It has not been all doom and gloom for the sector, though, with strong performance in other names like ARM Holdings, eBay, Facebook, Ixia and Radware, all of which are held in Rogoff's closed end fund.

Versus the average manager and looking at his open-end fund performance alone, Rogoff has delivered 40.1% while his peers in the telecoms, media and technology sector have returned 39%.

Rogoff's trust has also performed well and seen its net asset value (NAV) per ordinary share gain 37.6% over the last three years.  This is versus a 23.54% rise in the FTSE World Index.

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