What can you expect from us?
If we invest in your company
As shareholders, we see ourselves as co-owners of the business and co-partners to the management.
For us, business is about people. We therefore lay heavy emphasis on meetings, taking the time and effort to understand the management’s ethos and motivation. We invest in people we like, trust and admire.
We believe the right talent in the right place can dramatically improve the long-term value of any company. We will undertake site visits to identify first-class operators and understand the company. We want to invest alongside superior management teams who understand culture, people, business, capital allocation and shareholder value.
We expect the management to run their businesses ethically, with a long-term mindset, and for the benefit of all stakeholders. As investors, we do not get involved in the day-to-day running of our portfolio companies (as a matter of fact, we openly admit, we do not have the requisite skills to run companies). We strictly see ourselves as allocators of capital. That is where we stop.
However, as companies evolve, their needs change and they often reach a particular juncture in their development where we may be able to add value. Having invested in hundreds of companies, we have “been there before” and can offer advice and support. We often know what has worked for others and can offer thoughts on how to address the situation. Leadership have found our experience to be useful, especially when times are tough and others have abandoned them.
Our CEOs know their businesses backwards and need none of our interference. However, while we do not claim our network is better than theirs, we do think our network is likely to be different. We are able to introduce non-executive directors, advisers or key recruits. During fund raisings, we can lead and even cornerstone the round.
There is no hiding: We want our companies to succeed and we are always available for the company’s benefit. We will do what we can. Very much like a partner, we are open and straightforward in our communications. Management teams know where we stand and admire our analytical rigour and candidness. Sometimes conversations get tough but those are strictly “within the family”.
In conclusion, we have one simple objective : We want our managements to win.
If they win, we win.
If you are an investor in our Fund
Firstly, as a co-investor we see you as a partner. Our operating philosophy at Sterling is: always do what is right for the client. We will always act and behave honestly.
We are not index huggers, quite the opposite. Hence, it is highly unlikely that our performance would mirror the index.
We invest with a 3 to 5 year view and our style would be suitable for you, only if your time horizon is long term. Our thinking, skills and investment philosophy are not suitable for those seeking quick profits.
In short, we will treat you exactly how we would like to be treated – if you were managing our money – in an open and honest way.