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In this note, we use some high-profile, mainly hostile, bid situations to illustrate the “agency” costs that can be a material drag on the performance of a listed equities portfolio. The strong corporate governance embedded in PE limits such costs, allowing i) a long-term focus (with a through-cycle perspective), ii) shorter periods of operational underperformance, iii) reduced risk of non-financially motivated acquisitions, and iv) aligned managers’ and shareholders’ interests. While PE is resource-intensive, we demonstrate how PIP avoids agency costs – a material factor in it delivering market-beating, post-cost returns since inception.
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